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March 23, 1970

W.S. Kirkes (1823-1864) physician to St. Bartholomew's Hospital

JAMA. 1970;211(12):2010-2011. doi:10.1001/jama.1970.03170120054013

William Senhouse Kirkes, recognized in his brief professional career for his text on physiology and a comprehensive description of the sequelae of intracardiac emboli, was born at Holker in North Lancashire, England. He attended grammar school at Cartmel and at the age of 13 was apprenticed to a partnership of three surgeons in Lancaster, with whom he remained five years.1 He obtained his hospital and medical training at St. Bartholomew's Hospital in London; there he ranked high in chemistry, surgery, medicine, midwifery, medical jurisprudence, and clinical medicine. At the age of 23, Kirkes received the MD degree from the University of Berlin. Four years later he became licentiate of the Royal College of Physicians and, in 1855, was advanced to Fellowship. Only two years after receiving his degree, he was appointed medical registrar and demonstrator of morbid anatomy at St. Bartholomew's Hospital, assistant physician in 1854 and, in a