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April 1966

Sir Harold Gillies

Arch Otolaryngol. 1966;83(4):372-378. doi:10.1001/archotol.1966.00760020374017

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SIR Harold Gillies (1882-1960), Giles, as his friends called him, ranks high in the surgical world and, more than any one other person, was instrumental in the founding of plastic surgery as a specialty. He was in every respect a character (Fig 1).

To explain what this means comparison may be drawn with the senior ophthalmologist at King's College Hospital in the early days, Professor McHardy. This man was of imposing stature and of remarkable individuality.

When he visited the eye ward, a rather small room with a highly polished floor, he kept his top hat on to avoid draughts as he made his ward-round. After entering the room he walked very gingerly to the fireplace, took the shovel, raked out some ashes and scattered them over the floor, as one would over an icy path, to the sister's silent disgust. There are few characters of this caliber in medicine

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