Tag Archives: Anton Chekhov

The most enduring fictional character in literature, Sherlock Holmes, created by a physician

Marshall A. Lichtman Elmwood Avenue, Rochester, New York   Figure 1. Basil Rathbone (Sherlock Homes) with pipe and Nigel Bruce (Dr. John H. Watson). A scene from the film “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” in 1939. The plots rarely adhered to the Conan Doyle story plots and Inspector Lestrade of Scotland Yard and Dr. Watson […]

Medicinal leeches in art and literature

Martin Duke Mystic, Connecticut, United States   Figure 1. Woman applying a leech to her forearm. A large jar containing leeches is next to her. Belgium woodcut by Guillaume van den Bossche, 1639: National Library of Medicine Unique ID: 2315020R. For more than two thousand years, the extraordinary blood-sucking abilities of the medicinal leech (Hirudo […]

The education of Doctor Chekhov

Jack Coulehan Stony Brook, New York, USA   Chekov as a medical student October 1883. A fifth-year medical student at Moscow State University agonizes over his upcoming exam. “Woe is me!” he writes to his older brother, “I am forced to learn almost everything from the beginning… cadavers to be worked on, clinical studies, making […]

Anton Chekhov and the Sakhalin Penal Colony

Michael Bloor United Kingdom   In the nineteenth century the Czarist Government wanted to create an Arctic Australia by establishing a penal colony on Sakhalin Island, off the eastern coast of Siberia some five thousand miles from European Russia. There convicts who had served out their sentences would be obliged to stay as settlers, albeit […]

Suffering and empathy in the stories of Anton Chekhov and their relevance to healthcare today

Peter McCann London Anton Chekhov (1860-1904) Throughout his life, Anton Chekhov was often faced with the reality of suffering in human existence. His family’s bankruptcy and life of poverty in Moscow influenced young Anton’s thoughts about suffering and degradation in society, and his brief period of medical practice in Moscow provided him with enough experience […]