Sir Francis Martin Rouse Walshe (1885–1973) was born in London on 19 September 1885, but others report Ireland as his birthplace [
7]. He was the elder of the two surviving children of Rose and Michael Charles, whose firstborn had died in infancy [
8]. He went to Church school, to Prior Park College, Bath (1898–1901) and to University College School in London (1901–1903). Walshe loved history and English, but his dominant father, fascinated by the research and charisma of William R. Gowers (1845–1915) and John Hughlings Jackson (1835–1911), who lived within a few hundred yards from their home [
8], chose a medical career for him [
3]. Despite the advice of Francis’ headmaster about young Francis’ total lack of capacity to profit by the instruction [
8], and although he had never had lectures on science apart from short elementary courses on physic and chemistry [
8], Walshe joined University College London. In 1908 he took the B.Sc. with first-class honours in physiology, and two years...
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Many thanks to Marco Catani for his kind and thoughtful comments on the manuscript and to Elena Maria Ponzi for providing historical articles. The portait presented in this work is displayed at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square, London.
Conflicts of interest
The corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.