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March 1987

Tribute to Sir William Gowers and A Manual of Diseases of the Nervous System

Author Affiliations

246 S Washington Casper, WY 82601

Arch Neurol. 1987;44(3):248. doi:10.1001/archneur.1987.00520150004001

To the Editor.  —This is the 100th anniversary of the publication of A Manual of Diseases of the Nervous System by Sir William Gowers.1 Why commemorate an old textbook of clinical neurology in this day of advanced diagnostic and therapeutic technology, immunobiology, and molecular biology? Because, although 100 years old, it is not outdated. I still feel a thrill when I read Gowers' clinical observations. They are not only brilliant and still valid, but many of his insights have pointed the way to modern scientific investigation. When I read his descriptions I am reminded of the clear beauty of the Iliad. I am inspired. I am inspired to go back to the bedside, to sit, listen, and look again to see what more can be harvested. Go, read the current descriptions of epileptic seizures and motor system disease and the multitude of other entities and enjoy Gowers' unsurpassed clarity.

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