T J. Pettigrew claimed no fundamental contri• butions in the basic sciences or clinical medicine, but, because of his reputation as a medical biographer and renown as an antiquarian, he is one of the better known English physicians of the 19th century. The Medical Portrait Gallery contains plump biographies of 68 celebrated physicians and surgeons, including his own.1 In addition, he prepared the critical data on more than 500 physicians and surgeons for Rose's Biographical Dictionary.
Thomas was born in Fleet Street, London, the son and grandson of naval surgeons, was educated at a private school, and began dissection and the study of anatomy with William Hilliard, a surgeon. At the age of 14, he temporarily abandoned formal schooling to assist his father in the care of the inmates of the workhouse and the poor of a large parish. A passion for anatomy found expression in the examination of those