Birmingham Daily Post/1884/Death of Mr. William Bates
Death of Mr. William Bates
Many of our readers will regret to hear that Mr. William Bates, for several years surgeon to the Borough Hospital at Winson Green, died on Wednesday night, somewhat unexpectedly. On Sunday last he was found insensible in his bedroom, and had apparently suffered from an apoplectic attack. Immediate and unremitting attention was given to him by several medical friends, but he never regained consciousness. Mr. Bates was for some years a tutor of languages, and held for a time an appointment at Queen's college, but later in life he studied medicine, took his degree, and was appointed surgeon to the Borough Hospital. He was well known in literary world by his edition of "The Maclise Gallery of Portraits," from Fraser's magazine, which he conspicuously annotated from a large and minute knowledge of contemporary history and biography. For many years he was a learned and valuable contributor to "Notes and Queries," writing chiefly on what may be called "the bye-way subjects" of French and English literature. He was almost throughout life a most industrious collector of books, prints, drawings and curiosities generally, and his house in the Crescent was literally crammed in every corner with the results of his visits to the book shops and book boxes in London and elsewhere. He had a large knowledge of French (being often chosen as an interpreter), and his acquaintance with French literature was extensive. At the time of his death he had just complete the preface to an edition of the rare local work, "A Loyal Oration," for a series which Mr. W. Downing has announced, and of which Mr, Bates was to be editor. Mr, Bates was a widower, and when released from his duties at the hospital, he lived the life of a recluse among his books and other treasures, which he was always ready and willing to show his friends. As a literary man of considerable attainments, an acute critic and a laborious editor. Mr. Bates will long be remembered among Birmingham men who have made books and libraries the occupation or the solace of their lives.