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R., J. (1950). William Henry Butter Stoddart, M.D., Lond., F.R.C.P., Lond. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 31:286-288.

(1950). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 31:286-288

William Henry Butter Stoddart, M.D., Lond., F.R.C.P., Lond

J. R.

A field of human activity such as psycho-dynamics, if it is to develop smoothly and satisfactorily, requires a fairly wide range of personalities amongst its pioneers; it is not necessary that each one should have all of those characteristics which favour the spread of the ideas, but such of the necessary characteristics as they possess must be pronounced and effective.

Stoddart was not a man of original thought, he did not, that is to say, alter the horizon of man's vision, but he was a man of courage, of good nature, of great clinical gifts and of utter common sense. Having these qualities he was able to give much to psycho-analysis in England at a time when such help was most needed.

In many respects he was not the kind of person one would associate with a pioneering spirit. He was placid, seemed to be lazy, he was fat, affable and always well dressed, he enjoyed good food, good wine (or rather champagne) and idle days on the river. He had a pleasant singing voice, enjoyed charades and organizing impromptu concerts and played the piano charmingly. Nothing was done to excess: he was good company (not 'extremely good company'), he wore his clothes with elegance but without ostentation; his cigar case, match box, cigar clipper, all of gold, even his diamond ring, were part of an easy existence and were engulfed and hardly noticed in the portly urbanity that was the essential Stoddart.

Now let us turn to the Biographical Data for the two decades preceding his great Morrison Lectures.

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