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MEDICAL JURISPRUDENCE. That science which applies the principles and
practice of the different branches of medicine to the elucidation of
doubtful questions in courts of justice. By some authors, it is used in a
more extensive sense and also comprehends Medical Police, or those medical
precepts which may prove useful to the legislature or the magistracy. Some
authors, instead of using the phrase medical jurisprudence, employ, to
convey the same idea, those of legal medicine, forensic medicine, or, as the
Germans have it, state medicine.
2. The best American writers on this subject are Doctors T. R. Beck and J. B. Beck, Elements of Medical Jurisprudence; Doctor Thomas Cooper; Doctor James S. Stringham, who was the first individual to deliver a course of lectures on medical jurisprudence, in this country; Doctor Charles Caldwell. Among the British writers may be enumerated Doctor John Gordon Smith; Doctor Male; Doctor Paris and Mr. Fonblanque, who published a joint work; Mr. Chitty, and Dr. Ryan. The French writers are numerous; Briand, Biessy, Esquirol, Georget, Falret, Trebuchet, Mare, and others, have written treatises or published papers on this subject; the learned Fodere published a work entitled "Les Lois eclairees par les sciences physiques ou Traite de Medecine Legale et d'hygiene publique;" the "Annale d'hygiene et de Medecine Legale," is one of the most valued works on this subject. Among the Germans may be found Rose's Manual on Medico Legal Dissection; Metzger's Principles of Legal Medicine, and others. The reader is referred for a list of authors and their works on Medical Jurisprudence, to Dupin, Profession d'Avocat, tom. ii., p. 343, art. 1617 to 1636, bis. For a history of the rise and progress of Medical Jurisprudence, see Traill, Med. Jur. 13.