In memoriamBMJ 2007; 335 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.39398.491250.59 (Published 15 November 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;335:1049
- Theodore Dalrymple, writer and retired doctor
Am I morbid when I say that there comes a time in life when you wonder what people will say about you when you're gone? The answer, of course, is that they won't think at all about you, at least for much or most of the time. Life itself dictates that it must go on even without our help: we are as pebbles dropped into a pond, causing a few ripples at most.
When Dr Levet, whom Boswell described as “an obscure practitioner of physic” and who came of the humblest background, died in 1782 aged 77, the landlord with whom he had lodged for many years wrote a commemorative poem that immortalised …