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February 4, 1893

A Text-book of the Principles and Practice of Medicine,

JAMA. 1893;XX(5):132. doi:10.1001/jama.1893.02420320022004

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We may well ask ourselves, in these book-making days, what are the proper requisites of a text-book. Not many years ago a text-book was supposed to, and many did contain all that was then known regarding a particular department of medicine. Increased knowledge in every branch of medicine has served to emphasize the wide discrepancy existing between the actual knowledge on any one subject and that contained within the covers of any one volume. To meet this defect we have had the various encyclopædias, systems, etc., in this country and the ponderous many volumed "hand-books" so much favored by our German confréres. With this wealth of knowledge we must judge the capacity of a text-book writer to-day, more by what he leaves out than by what he puts into his work. Not only has widening knowledge called for a modification of our text-books but methods of teaching have so changed

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