Lives of the fellows

Francis Henry Ramsbotham

b.9 December 1801 d.7 July 1868
MD Edin FRCP(1844)

F. H. Ramsbotham was born at Richmond, the son of John Ramsbotham, M.D, lecturer on obstetric medicine at the London Hospital. He was educated at St. Paul’s School and apprenticed to a druggist in Cheapside. In 1818 he entered the London Hospital as a pupil but in the next year transferred his studies to Edinburgh. Having graduated in 1822, he joined his father in practice and assisted him in his lectures. In 1825 the Royal Maternity Charity, the Tower Hamlets Dispensary and the Eastern Dispensary appointed him as their physician. He set up practice on his own account in 1826 and achieved great success as an obstetrician, which declined, however, in his later years owing to his opposition to the use of chloroform in childbirth. From 1854 to 1863 he was obstetric physician, as well as lecturer on obstetric and forensic medicine, at the London Hospital. As a teacher he was assiduous if dogmatic. Ramsbotham acted as first secretary of the Obstetrical Society of London and, at various dates, filled the offices of president of the Harveian and Hunterian Societies and of vice-president of the Pathological Society. His book, first published in 1844, on the Principles and Practice of Obstetric Medicine and Surgery, was highly esteemed in its day. He married Mary, daughter of Henry Lindsay of Perth, and had two sons. He died at Perth.

G H Brown

[Lancet, 1868; London Hospital Gazette, 1917-19, xxii, 221; B.M.J., 1868; D.N.B., xlvii, 265]

(Volume IV, page 37)

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