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There seems to be no question that productivity conditioned upon inspiration and discovery has been, if not the exclusive business of youth, at least one of its natural prerogatives. In different fields of endeavor the timing may vary. Superior performances in the physical sciences come perhaps a decade earlier than in the biological sciences. Despite the fact that an occasional person is still productive and a rare one creative after the middle years of life, the weight of experience and observation is with William Osier, whose emphasis of this point in a playful allusion to an arbitrary termination of activity in "The Fixed Period" address, brought down upon his head the howls of an outraged reading public fed upon the yellow journals of the day. Despite Sir Clifford Allbutt's championing of the older physician and contributor, the essential truth of the accent on youth has never been successfully denied.
Bean WB. Young Endeavour. AMA Arch Intern Med. 1959;104(1):167–168. doi:10.1001/archinte.1959.00270070169025
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