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Sir Alfred Gilbert, R.A

    Naturevolume 134page727 (1934) | Download Citation



    IN connexion with the death of Sir Alfred Gilbert, the sculptor, which occurred on November 4, at the age of eighty years, it is interesting to note that originally he contemplated adopting the medical profession as a career; early changed, however, for that of a sculptor. St. Bartholomew's Hospital Medical School recalls, with legitimate pride, that among medals attached to the foundation, one, instituted in 1897, was in honour of Sir William Lawrence (a colleague in his day of Abernethy), surgeon at St. Bartholomew's from 1824 until 1865, and president of the Royal College of Surgeons in 1846 and in 1855. The medal was designed and executed by Gilbert. Cast in gold and chased, and 2J in. in diameter, it was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1897, together with an enlargement in plaster of Paris. The gift is awarded annually in association with a valued senior studentship in medicine and surgery. The obverse depicts the head of Lawrence, not in profile, but within a sculptured circle, looking directly towards the spectator, an unusual medallic presentation. The reverse carries a beautiful composite design, also within a sculptured border; a youth in the centre has two draped females on either side personifying Wisdom and Science, and they whisper words of counsel, embody ing a line from Homer. Sir William Lawrence, who was born in 1783 and died in 1867, is thus worthily commemorated through the art of Gilbert.

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