Lives of the fellows

James Pearson Irvine

b.13 March 1842 d.15 October 1880
BA Lond BSc MB(1870) MD LRCP Edin LRCS Edin FRCP(1879)

Pearson Irvine was the third son of Dr. James Pearson Irvine of Galgate, Lancaster, and went to the Royal Grammar School, Lancaster, as a boy. He was a student at Queen’s College, Belfast, and University College, London, and took the London degrees of B.A. and B.Sc. He studied medicine at Liverpool Royal Infirmary and duly passed the first M.B. examination with distinction. But in 1865 his training was interrupted by his father’s death, which obliged him to obtain the Edinburgh qualifying diplomas at once and take over the family practice. Not until 1869 was Irvine able to resume his studies. He graduated as M.B. in 1870 and, after a brief spell of practice in Liverpool, returned to London in 1874. In his few remaining years he was closely identified with Charing Cross Hospital, where he held office as assistant physician (1874— 80), lecturer on botany (1874-76), lecturer on forensic medicine (1875-80) and demonstrator of morbid anatomy. He was also one of the physicians to the Victoria Hospital for Children. His most useful written work, published posthumously in 1880, dealt with relapse in typhoid fever, a condition unrecognised by many of his contemporaries. An enemy of charlatanry and loose thinking in every form, he succumbed to overwork at the age of thirty-eight when on the threshold of a career of unusual promise.

G H Brown

[Lancet, 1880; Medical Times and Gazette, 1880]

(Volume IV, page 265)

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