A Reminiscence of Dr. Holmes

1895 Boston Medical and Surgical Journal  
The hospital is visited by princes of the blood and their wives aud other distinguished personages. The Chief Abbot of the Higashi Hongwan Temple and other high priests, both Buddhist and Shinto, read prayers with any patient whose case is dangerous. The contributions sent to the hospital from almost every part of the empire are almost innumerable. Bandages are, of course, the article most needed, yet such is the supply incessantly sent by well-wishel's that the hospital has not had to buy a
more » ... not had to buy a single one. Light literature contributed by patriotic people for the use of the patients already fills one warehouse. It will thus be seen that the lot of those who receive wounds or fall ill in the discharge of their duties is not hard." The letter closes with kind injunctions to the families of those away at the seat of war to await the return of their heroes with their stories of glorious deeds achieved by themselves and their comrades. DUJARDIN-BEAUMETZ. Among the French representatives of clinical medicine, no name has been more prominently before the profession during the past ten or twelve years than that of Dujardinlieaumetz. This has been due to his contributions to medicine and the activity and zeal which he has manifested in forwarding advances in therapeutics by the critical testing in his hospital and private practice, of new remedies and methods, and the published results of those labors. He was popular as a lecturer and as a writer, and his principal works have been translated into nearly all the languages of Europe. Some eight translated volumes of his writings have been published in this country. The " Leçons de Clinique Thérapeutique," in three volumes, has gone, through eight French editions, and is a fine, lucid exposition of the most approved methods of treating the ordinary diseases. The aim of the writer was to be practical, and therefore just enough consideration was given to etiology, diagnosis, pathology, etc., to obtain useful hints as to treatment. " The New Medications " baa also passed through numerous editions, and contains a critical appreciation of new methods, such as lavage and gavage, nerve stretching; new remedies, such as acetanilid, antipyrin, phenacctin, exalgin, thallin, Uaisin, oonvallarla and Bulphonâl. The " Dictionnaire de Thérapeutique " (Therapeutic Dictionary) is published in four large quarto volumes and contains full consideration of almost everything of recognized utility in the treatment of disease. Two volumes one on Acute, the other on Chronic Alcohol-Poisoning are characterized by much original research, containing the details and results of numerous experiments extending through a series of years. An early treatise on Acute Myelitis was long regarded as an authority. Books on Hygienic Therapeutics, on Alimentary Hygiene, on Prophylactic Hygiene, etc., have appeared during the last few years and have been largely reproduced in medical journals in this country. Dujardin-Beaumetz began his medical studies iu 1853 in Paris. He became interne of the hospitals in 1857 under Velpeau and chef de clinique under Bolder. He was three times Lauréat of the Faculty, then Lauréat, of the Hospitals, and finally Lauréat of the Institute, obtaining the prize Montyon for bis researches on the alcohols. He was received as doctor of medicine in 1862. He was long physieian-in-chief to St. Antoine Hospital, afterwards to Cochin. His clinical lectures at both these hospitals attracted to him a large number of pupils. At Cochin he founded and equipped two large laboratories the one for the teaching of therapeutics, the other of bacteriology, from both of which much good work has emanated. He was a member of the Academy of Medicine, founded, ind had since been President of the Société de Médecine et le Chirurgie Platique, also of the Société de Thérapeutique. He was long officially connected with the Council of Hygiene and Salubrity of the Seine, of which he was a prominent member, devoting himself with zeal to all questions affecting the health of Paris, and especially epidemics. In 1884, and more recently in 1892, during the cholera epidemic, he rendered important, service to the prefecture of police and the citizens in the effective arrangements which be organized for fighting the epidemic. In 1893 the French government, in appreciation of his services, conferred on him the Cross of the Commander of the Legion of Honor. lie. was for many years editor-in-chief of the Bulletin Général de Thérapeutique. It is the same old story, of attempting to do too much work, and taking too little rest and recreation. Dujardin-Beanmetz has for several years been a tufferer from hepatic troubles, and a little more than a year ago underwent the operation of cholecystenterostomy for complete occlusion of the choledochus. The operation undoubtedly prolonged his life, but he none the less eventually succumbed to hepatic infection as the sequel. He died at the age of sixtyone. and pays a well-deserved tribute to his great interest in the microscope, and his ingenious invention of various useful adjustments to it in those early days of its use by the medical profession, lie also quotes a passage from bis last letter to him, in which he says : " My most successful contrivance was a stereoscope of a very simple pattern, which had a great run, and has remained popular, 1 think, to the present time." It is well, 1 think, to remind your readers that this little invention, the hand-stereoscope, is one of Dr. lioluies's contrivances, as I dare say many of them, of the younger genoration of doctors, are not aware of the fact. 1 myself have found it a very great convenience. Dr. Cole's paper tempts me to give you a reminiscence of my own, which fully illustrates Dr. Ilolmea's honhommie and at the same time his honest self-appreciation. In my early student days in the Treinont Street Medical School, after a recitation in anatomy to Dr. Holmes, at which I happened not to be present, he sang to the class a new song of his own composition probably one of his humorous medical productions, but of this I am not quite sure. Two days after, while he. and I were engaged together in the dissecting-room, I casually remarked, " I greatly regret not being present at the last recitation in anatomy." "Why?" he asked. "Because I lost the song you were so kind as to sing to the students." After a moment's pause, with his head turned down a little towards one shoulder, and a peculiar compression of the lips an attitude and expression of the mouth which all his old friends will remember, be said abruptly, "Would you like to hear it?" " Why, of course, doctor, 1 should," was my reply. " Well, I'll sing it to you," was his immediate response. So he laid down his scalpel and forceps, and standing facing me, with the poor relic of humanity on the table between us, he. began, and went through the whole of it, with as much enthusiasm as if he were singing to a thousand people. A fier the prolonged applause of his audience of one had subsided, lie said, " Do you like it?" " Why, of course, doctor," said 1, " no one could hear it without liking it." "Well," said he, "it is good. No one but a fool would nretend he doesn't know when he. luis done a good thing."
doi:10.1056/nejm189503141321109 fatcat:6xltmcx2evbjng2y3oadw67hbm