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October 1957

Senility: Its Nature, with Some Thoughts Concerning Treatment and Prevention

Author Affiliations


From the Department of Neurology, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and the Cincinnati General Hospital.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1957;100(4):519-528. doi:10.1001/archinte.1957.00260100003001

There is nothing which for my part I like better, Cephalus, than conversing with aged men; for I regard them as travellers who have gone a journey which I too may have to go, and of whom I ought to inquire, whether the way is smooth and easy, or rugged and difficult. And this is a question which I should like to ask of you who have arrived at that time which the poets call the "threshold of old age"—Is life harder towards the end, or what report do you give of it?

I will tell you, Socrates, he said, what my own feeling is. Men of my age flock together; we are birds of a feather, as the old proverb says; and at our meetings the tale of my acquaintance commonly is—I can not eat, I can not drink; the pleasures of youth and love are fled away: there