Tag Archives: John Keats

Dr. Edward Livingston Trudeau and aeration of the White Plague

Philip R. Liebson Chicago, Illinois, United States   Photo from the Adirondack Experience Museum. Circa 1895. Edward Livingston Trudeau was born in 1848, one year before Frédéric Chopin died of tuberculosis. Trudeau’s extended family eventually included Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada, and Garry Trudeau of Doonesbury fame. In his time tuberculosis was killing […]

Medical and literary coupling

Stephen Finn South Africa   (To be read aloud, with gusto and with a strong beat) Collage created by Hektoen staff. Images from left to right. Top row: Portrait of Rabelais, circa 1820. By Louis-François Durrans. From the Rabelais Museum, via Wikimedia; Anton Chekhov, via Wikimedia. Center: Photo by National Cancer Institute on Unsplash Bottom […]

C. Louis Leipoldt: the polymath physician and literary giant

Stephen Finn South Africa   Fig 1: Afrikaans poet C. Louis Leipoldt. circa 1910. Public Domain. Via Wikimedia. Looking out across a landscape of dramatic mountains and purple and orange sunsets is a small cave. Listen carefully in this desolate place in a western corner of South Africa, and you will hear in the distance […]

Why do physicians write so badly?

Peter Arnold Sydney, Australia   Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels An old joke is that pharmacists are the only people who can read physicians’ handwriting. This piece is not about handwriting, but about writing style. Compared with great medical authors, like Somerset Maugham, Conan Doyle, Anton Chekhov, John Keats, and Friedrich von Schiller, most […]

Book Review of John Keats’ Medical Notebook

Arpan K. Banerjee Solihull, United Kingdom   Cover: John Keats’ Medical Notebook February 23, 2021, marked the bicentenary of the death of the great Romantic poet John Keats. Born in 1795, Keats lived a tragically short life, dying at the age of only twenty-five. It is perhaps little known that he first qualified as an […]

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 […]

Letting go of logic

Nimisha Bajaj Columbus, Ohio, United States   Last Supper by Leonardo DaVinci. Photo by Paris Orlando. November 2019. Public Domain “He’s here for aspiration pneumonia. He doesn’t want a G-tube even though we tried to explain to him that if he continues to eat and drink by mouth, this will keep happening and he will […]

The female body dissected: Anatomy and John Keats

Niamh Davies-Branch Aberdeen, United Kingdom   A boiled gland with rose-like folds from Sir Astley Cooper’s Plates of the Anatomy of the Breast. Plates of the Anatomy of the Breast by Sir Astley Cooper in Sir Duncan Rice Library Special Collections, Aberdeen, UK John Keats, poet of the great odes, was also a surgical apprentice […]

Reading the brain in John Keats’s Ode to Psyche

Kathryne Dycus Madrid, Spain   “Psyché ranimée par le baiser de l’Amour (Psyche revived by the kiss of Love)” by Antonia Canova. 1793. Credit: Louvre Museum. Public Domain. Photo by Eric Pouhier. 2007. CC BY-SA 3.0. The Romantic poet John Keats wrote in a letter dated May 18, 1818, “I am glad at not having […]

John Keats – one whose name was writ in water

John Keats, one of the great poets of all times, was born near Moorgate in London in 1795. His father was an inn stable keeper (an ostler), who one night fell off a horse and fatally fractured his skull, leaving his family somewhat impecunious.1 John, sibling of four, was far from a model pupil in school – […]