BEFORE 1892, the name of William Osler meant but little to me; he was simply one of the teachers in the new medical school in Baltimore. But when, in that year, he published his textbook, "The Principles and Practice of Medicine,"1 all was changed. After reading its 1,079 pages, I wrote a long, laudatory review, which closed with the statement that it was not extravagant praise to call it the best textbook in English on the practice of medicine. At that time I was 31. Today, at 87, I still believe my early opinion was justified. The textbook's successive editions have well deserved the blue ribbon award of merit.
It must have been about 1898 when I first met William Osler in person. For no good reason I had pictured him as of the dignified, unapproachable type, rather paunchy and burly, perhaps with muttonchop whiskers. One day, as I
HERRICK JB. WILLIAM OSLER: A PERSONAL NOTE. Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1949;84(1):46–50. doi:10.1001/archinte.1949.00230010056011
Coronavirus Resource Center
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.