paris physician afterwards
BARTHEZ, or BAimihs, PAUL JOSEPH, one of the most celebrated physicians of France, was born on the 11th tained his nineteenth year, he received his doctor's degree. He afterwards occasionally visited Paris, where he attracted the notice and acquired the friendship of the most distinguished literati of the period. In 1756 he obtained the appointment of physician to the military hospital in Normandy attached to the army of observation commanded by Marshal d'Estrles. A severe attack of hospital fever compelled him to leave this post ; but the numerous cases which had come under his notice furnished materials for several papers contributed to the _Memoirs of the Academy of Sciences. In 1757 his services were required in the medical staff of the army of Westphalia, where he had the rank of consulting physician. After his return to Paris he acted for seine time as joint editor of the Journal des Savour and the Encyclopedie Mitlaodiqnc. In 1761 he obtained a medical professorship at Montpellier, in which his abilities as a teacher soon shone forth with unrivalled lustre. His success was the more honourable, inasmuch as his colleagues - Lamure, Leroy, and Venel - were men of distinguished reputation, and had raised the school to a high pitch of celebrity.
In 1774 he was created joint chancellor of the university, with the certainty of succeeding singly to the office on the death of the colleague, which happened in 1786. He afterwards took the degree of doctor in civil law, and was appointed counsellor to the Supreme Court of Aids at Montpellier. In 17S0 he was induced to fix his residence in Paris, having been nominated consulting physician to the king, with a brevet of counsellor of state, and a pension of a hundred Louis. Honours were now heaped upon him ; he was admitted free associate to the Academies of Sciences and of Inscriptions, and appointed first physician to the duke of Orleans, in the room of Tronchin. His reputation increased in proportion as his merits were displayed on a wider theatre. He practised as a physician at Paris for nearly ten years, and received the most flattering testimonials of public approbation.
The outbreak of the French Revolution compelled Barthez to leave Paris. He lost considerable part of his fortune, and retired to Carcassonne, where he devoted himself to the study of theoretical medicine. It was in this retreat that he gave to the world his „Youvelle .Wcanique des Mouvemens de l'Homme et des Animaux, which appeared in 1798.
On the re-establishment of the College of Medicine at Montpellier, Barthez was naturally looked upon as the person most likely to revive its former fame. But age and infirmity operated to dissuade him from resuming the laborious office of teacher, and he was accordingly nominated honorary professor. In 1802 he received several marks of favour from the new government under Bonaparte ; he was nominvted titular physician to the Government, and afterwards consulting physician to the emperor, and member of the Legion of Honour.
His Traitement des Maladies Goutteuses, in two vols. 8vo, appeared in 1802, and he afterwards occupied, himself in preparing for the press a new edition of his EMmens de la Science de l'Honzme, of which he just lived to see the publication. His health had been declining for some years before his death, which took place soon after his removal to Paris, on the 15th of October 1806, in the 72d year of his age. He bequeathed his books and manuscripts to M. Lordat, who, in consequence, published two volumes of Consultations de Medicine, Paris, 1810, Svc), to which he prefixed a preface of his own. Another posthumous work of Barthez, the Traits du Beau, preceded by some account of his life, was edited in 1807 by his brother, M. Barthez de Marmoridres.
Barthez has enjoyed a much higher reputation on the Continent than in England, where, indeed, his writings are comparatively little known. His principal work is the Nouveaux Elements de la Science de l'Homnze, in which he unfolds his doctrine of the vital principle, or formative force. He was one of the strongest opponents of the theory which would explain the phenomena of life by physical or chemical laws. (See Lordat, Exposition de la doctrine medicale de I'. J. Barthes, 1815.)