Medical collections and their intellectual fascination


Wednesday 7 February 2018


Venue Royal Society of Medicine
1 Wimpole Street
Organised by

History of Medicine Society



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about this event

*A subsidised rate of £10 per place is available on a first come first serve basis for 8 student places for each meeting.*

Register today for the first History of Medicine meeting in 2018. It will discuss medical collections and their intellectual fascination and will be followed with a two course dinner.

Biography of Mrs Sue Weir

A Westminster Hospital nurse, later trained as a ‘Blue Badge’ Guide. These combined interests led her to take the Diploma in Medical History at the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries and she now runs her own Medical History Tours, conducting walks and talks and tour leading medical history cruises. She has been a past President of this Society, and of the British Society for the History of Medicine and the Hunterian Society.

Abstract of 'Medical Collections: A joy or a burden?'

This presentation will:
1. Describe the nature of collecting in general
2. Describe the attraction of medical collections
3. Contrast the joys and burdens of collecting
4. Examine their social and educational value for medical historians and the public

Biography of Mr Neil Weir

Neil Weir MD MA FRCS qualified in 1965King’s College, London and Westminster Medical School. He was consultant ENT surgeon at the Royal Surrey County Hospital, Guildford (1978-2002) and honorary consultant otologist to Atkinson Morley’s Hospital, Wimbledon (St George’s neuroscience centre) (1987-97). For the RSM he served as honorary editor and was a member of council, the academic board and the honorary officers committee (1996-2000). He was concurrently president of the sections of otology and history of medicine (2001-02) and vice-president of the Society (2002-4). He edited the Journal of Laryngology and Otology (1992-2004) and published Otolaryngology –An Illustrated History in 1990 (second edition with Albert Mudry 2013).

Abstract of 'The Onodi collection – lost and found'

The aim of this paper is to trace the life of the rhinologist Adolph Onodi (1857-1919) and the catalysts that led to the formation of his collection of wet and dry specimens of the nose and sinuses in adults and children. On his father’s death in November 1919 and faced with poverty and unemployment induced by WWI and the Hungarian Bolshevik revolution Ladislaus Onodi sought to sell the collection. Eventually it was acquired by a group of British otolaryngologists for the Royal College of Surgeons of England only to be extensively damaged during WW II.
This story will be told within the context of the leading UK otolaryngologists and their associations within the 1920s and 1930s.


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5.30 pm

Registration, tea and coffee

6.00 pm

Introduction and welcome

Dr Catherine Sarraf, President, History of Medicine Society

6.05 pm

Medical Collections: A joy or a burden

Mrs Sue Weir, Medical Historian

6.50 pm

The Onodi collection – lost and found

Mr Neil Weir, Otolaryngologist and president of the British Society for the History of ENT, The British Society for the History of ENT

7.35 pm

Close of meeting

7.40 pm

Dinner - for those who have pre-booked

register now for this event

register for this event

  • Online registration is now closed
  • Unfortunately we are unable to take on the day dinner bookings
  • On the day registrations will be accepted, first come first serve.
  • RSM member rates £25
  • Non member rates £35
register now


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organiser's details

For information on this event, contact Alison ChanTel: 02072903937 Email: arrow