1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Liston, Robert

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LISTON, ROBERT (1794–1847), Scottish surgeon, was born on the 28th of October 1794 at Ecclesmachan, Linlithgow, where his father was parish minister. He began the study of anatomy under Dr John Barclay (1758–1826) at Edinburgh in 1810, and soon became a skilful anatomist. After eight years’ study, he became a lecturer on anatomy and surgery in the Edinburgh School of Medicine; and in 1827 he was elected one of the surgeons to the Royal Infirmary. In 1835 he was chosen professor of clinical surgery in University College, London, and this appointment he held until his death, which occurred in London on the 7th of December 1847. Liston was a teacher more by what he did than by what he said. He taught simplicity in all operative procedures; fertile in expedients, of great nerve and of powerful frame, he is remembered as an extraordinarily bold, skilful and rapid operator. He was the author of The Elements of Surgery (1831–1832) and Practical Surgery (1837), and made several improvements in methods of amputation, and in the dressing of wounds.