[Skip to Content]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address 54.166.48.3. Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
[Skip to Content Landing]
Article
July 1964

A Fly Practice

Author Affiliations

Calgary Associate Clinic Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Arch Intern Med. 1964;114(1):158-159. doi:10.1001/archinte.1964.03860070204031

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.

Abstract

Doctors whose business it is to know something of that "dark cabinet," the human heart, must often ask themselves the question: What is truth? Or again: What of the distinctions involved in a half-truth, in what is commonly called polite truth, or in flat equivocation? These high matters are brought into bold relief by considering a practice that was carried out in quite a few instances in the past two or three centuries, and is a most curious circumstance in medicolegal history. This concerns a ruse in which a live fly was placed in a dead man's mouth after which witnesses swore that "there was life in him." I quote three examples.

The first is from Edward Marjoribank's Life of Lord Carson.

These County Courts were a great school for cross-examination. These simple Irish folk would come to Court with some extraordinary story all rehearsed and learnt by heart. They

First Page Preview View Large
First page PDF preview
First page PDF preview
×