Papers of Sir Eric Wilfred Fish

Scope and Content

The papers include publications, some in manuscript or draft, biographical material, material relating to committees and organisations (British Society of Periodontology, Nuffield Foundation), and correspondence. Very little remains of Fish's professional research material. Fish had worked carefully through his papers after his retirement, and many items bear lengthy comments and evaluations, personal recollections of his career and colleagues, and reflections on the state of dental health.

Administrative / Biographical History

Fish was born 30 January 1894 in Chard, Somerset and educated at Kingswood School, Bath, and Manchester University (LDS 1914; ChB 1916; MD 1924; DSc London 1932). His key areas of expertise were histopathology of enamel, dentine, dental pulp, surgical pathology of the mouth, infection in bone, full denture prothesis, and the aetiology and treatment of peridontal disease. The John Hampton Hale Laboratory was established at the Royal Dental Hospital for Fish. He was Chairman of the Dental Board, 1944-1956, and then President of the General Dental Council, 1956-1964. He was involved in the Nuffield Foundation Fellowship scheme. He was President of the Scientific Commission of the International Dental Federation, 1931-1936 and President of the International Dental Congress, in 1952. He became a Fellow of the new Faculty of Dental Science of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, and was Dean, 1958, he was then elected to the Fellowship of the College.

Fish married Hilda Russel in 1916 and they had one son and one daughter before divorcing. In 1950 he married Myfanwy Bruce Hodge. Fish was knighted in 1954. He died on 20 July 1974.


By section as follows: Biographical and personal, Committees, societies and organisations, Correspondence, Publications and lectures. Index of correspondents.

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Other Finding Aids

For a more detailed description of this collection, please see the RCS England Archives online catalogue.

Archivist's Note

Description based on that created by NCUACS, University of Bath.

Custodial History

Received for cataloguing in 1976 by the Contemporary Scientific Archives Centre from Professor Bertram Cohen. Deposited in the Royal College of Surgeons Library in 1977.

Related Material

The Royal College of Surgeons of England also holds related material in:

  • War diaries 1917 Mesopotamia (1 volume) (Ref: Add Mss 495)
  • Publications 1924-1970 (Ref: Add Mss 410)
  • Formation of Faculty of Dental Surgery (Ref: Add Mss 392)
  • Faculty of Dental Surgery Records (Ref: RCS College archives)
  • Photo-micrographs of dental specimens (Ref: RCS-MUS Odontological Museum Archives), 11 boxes

The General Dental Council, London, holds material in its Council records relating to Fish's work for the Council.