Lives of the fellows

Francis Arthur Bainbridge

b.29 July 1874 d.27 October 1921
BA Cantab(1896) BSc Lond(1897) MA MD Cantab(1904) DSc Lond FRCP(1909) FRS

F. A. Bainbridge was born at Stockton-on-Tees, the elder son of Robert Robinson Bainbridge, chemist, by his wife Mary Sanderson. He was educated at the Leys School and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he obtained double first-class honours in the natural sciences tripos, graduating as B.A. in 1896. He did his clinical training at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital and qualified in 1899, two years after taking the London B.Sc. degree. The next few years were taken up with junior appointments at St. Bartholomew’s and the Hospital for Sick Children, and with physiological research at University College; he was also physician to the Farringdon General Dispensary for a short while. He was elected to a B.M.A. research scholarship in 1902 and received the Horton-Smith prize for his M.D. thesis in 1904. In 1907, after two years as Gordon lecturer on experimental pathology at Guy’s, he joined the staff of the Lister Institute, being, first, Jenner memorial student and, later, assistant bacteriologist. His main interest, however, lay in physiology, and he welcomed the opportunity to return to experimental work afforded by his appointment as professor of physiology at Durham University in 1911. This was followed four years later by his acceptance of the chair of physiology at St. Bartholomew’s. During the war years he gave his services as an R.A.M.C. captain, firstly, to a military hospital in Newcastle and then to research on poison gases at Millbank. Bainbridge was Arris and Gale lecturer at the Royal College of Surgeons in 1908 and Milroy Lecturer at the Royal College of Physicians in 1912. His researches threw fresh light on such subjects as the differentiation of the paratyphoid bacilli, the formation of lymph, the functional mechanisms of the gall-bladder, and circulatory problems associated with muscular exercise. Bainbridge, in spite of an unimpressive appearance and manner, excelled as a teacher by reason of his lucidity. He was fond of outdoor exercise and climbing. He married in 1905 Hilda Winifred, daughter of Rev. Edward Thornton Smith, of Bickley, Kent, and had one daughter. He died in London.

G H Brown

[Lancet, 1921; B.M.J., 1921; D.N.B., 1912-21, 17; St. Bart.'s Hospital Journal, 1921, xxix, 45; Al.Cantab., I, 121]

(Volume IV, page 496)

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