Papers of Robert Sydenham Fancourt Barnes, 1858-1892

Scope and Content

Manuscript letters to the British physician, Robert Sydenham Fancourt Barnes relating to professional and social matters, including from Etienne-Jules Marey, Sir William MacCormac, Sir Thomas Spencer Wells, Jonathan Hutchinson, Alexander Simpson, Giuseppe Chiarleoni, the Société Impériale de Médecine in Constantinople, Francis Neugebauer, William Smoult Playfair, Charles Warner, John Hall Davis and Alfred Meadows.

Administrative / Biographical History

Born, 1849; educated at Merchant Taylors' School, at a school in Honfleur, France; and Lincoln College, Oxford; studied clinical medicine at St Thomas's Hospital, and obstetrics in Dublin, at the Rotunda Hospital; worked at Marischal College, Aberdeen; graduated MD from Aberdeen University, 1875; returned to London and became closely associated with his father's practice; member the Royal College of Physicians, 1877; editorial staff of the British Medical Journal; member of the Board of Examination of Midwives, instituted by the Obstetrical Society of London (he subsequently transferred himself from this Society to the British Gynaecology Society); physician to the British Lying-in Hospital and the Great Northern Central Hospital, where he later became senior physician; physician to the St George's and St James's Dispensary; consulting physician at the Royal Maternity Charity and the Prudential Assurance Company; physician to the Chelsea Hospital for Women; Honorary Corresponding Fellow of the Societe de Gynecologie de Paris, the Gynaecological Society of Boston, USA, and the Societe Imperiale de Medecine, Istanbul (then Constantinople); by the mid-1890s Barnes had practically retired from hospital work, devoting himself entirely to private practice; died, 1908.

Publications:A Manual of Midwifery for Midwives (9 eds., last 1902)

System of Obstetric Medicine and Surgery (jointly written with Robert Barnes)

'The Indications Afforded by the Sphygmograph in the Puerperal State', Transactions of the Obstetrical Society of London (1875)Perineorrhaphy by Flap Splitting

Martin's Atlas of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (translated and edited)German English Dictionary of Medical Words

Neugebauer on Spondylolisthesis (for the New Sydenham Society)


Chronological where possible.

Access Information

Open to researchers by appointment, Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm. mailto:

Archivist's Note

Catalogued by Penny Hutchins in January 2014.

Conditions Governing Use

Out of copyright.

Reproductions are available at the discretion of the College Archivist.

Custodial History

Transferred from the RCOG Library's 'Autographed Letters Collection' to the Archives in August 2007. Possibly purchased from a London book/autograph seller in July 1984. A letter from Lord Lister is missing from the collection and was possibly removed for separate sale.