was born, it will be remembered, August 29, 1809, graduated at Harvard in 1829, studied law for a year and a half, then studied medicine in Europe
for two years and a half, took his degree at the Harvard Medical School in 1836, became Professor
in 1838, and Professor
at the Harvard Medical School in 1847.
He was thus away from Cambridge
during most of my boyhood, and my memory first depicts him vividly when he came back to give his Phi Beta Kappa poem in 1836.
He was at this time a young physician of great promise, which was thought to be rather impaired by his amusing himself with poetry.
So at least, he always thought; and he cautioned in later years a younger physician, Dr. Weir Mitchell
, to avoid the fault which he had committed, advising him to be known exclusively as a physician until his reputation in that line should be made.
The effect of levity conveyed by this poem — which was in the main a serious, not to say a ponderous, one--was due largely to certain passages which he described as “wanting in dignity” and only partly reprinted in an appendix.
Especially criticised was one