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June 1959

Aubrey's Brief Lives.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1959;103(6):1015. doi:10.1001/archinte.1959.00270060167041

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"Words, no less than men, have a history of their own, and in reading Aubrey after so great a lapse of time, the sharpness of every phrase and sentence is particularly striking." Thus Oliver Lawson Dick justifies his elegant edition of "Aubrey's Brief Lives." If Aubrey is known by physicians today it is for his perceptive, though perhaps not totally accurate, commentary on William Harvey, which has come in for much notice during the recent tricentenary celebrations of Harvey's death. If one savors words and style and if through them he can get even a glimpse into the mental workings of men of another age, he is well served. Thus he may understand and profit by some of the lessons of history. The late Elizabethan times in England form one of the most remarkable phases in the history of the English-speaking peoples. A small upstart country had begun to develop

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