Browse Fellows


www Lives

Biographical entry Gibbs, Charles (1868 - 1943)

MRCS 20 July 1890; FRCS 11 May 1893; LRCP 1890.

18 April 1868
5 October 1943
Thames Ditton
General surgeon


Born in London on 18 April 1868 the second son of Thomas Gibbs merchant, and his wife, née Errington. He was educated at the City of Westminster School and in 1885 entered Charing Cross Hospital Medical School, with which he remained connected throughout his life. Gibbs' served for a time as chief of the team of prosectors, who prepared material for the practical examinations of the Royal College of Surgeons, and he always retained an active interest in the anatomical basis of surgery. He was appointed lecturer on clinical surgery and anatomy at Charing Cross Hospital, and was the last surgeon to combine the teaching of both subjects there. Gibbs served the medical school in various capacities, at first in charge of the anatomical department in succession to J Stanley N Boyd and Sir H F Waterhouse, later as vice-dean and finally as chairman of the committee. In the Hospital itself he was successively surgical registrar, assistant surgeon (1896), surgeon in charge of the venereal disease department, and surgeon; he retired in 1928 after a long period as senior surgeon, and was appointed consulting surgeon. He also served the Lock Hospital for more than forty-five years, having been appointed assistant surgeon in 1897 and surgeon in 1907, and was senior surgeon there at the time of his death.

During the South African war Gibbs served as senior surgeon, with the rank of captain, in Langman's Hospital, having Sir Arthur Conan Doyle as his medical colleague. On the formation of the RAMC territorial Branch he was commissioned captain à la suite on 2 December 1908, and served during the first world war at the 4th London General Hospital, and was mentioned in despatches. Gibbs was chiefly interested in urological surgery and served as vice-president of the section of venereal diseases at the Newcastle meeting of the British Medical Association in 1921. Though endowed with marked manipulative dexterity he was not fond of operating. He was, however, a brilliant and humorous teacher with a caustic tongue; and a man of marked likes and dislikes, prepared to back his friends among colleagues or pupils with unswerving loyalty. He was a member of the Pewterers' Company from 1889, and Master in 1928.

Gibbs married in 1900 Kate, daughter of H T Northcroft of Lancing. Mrs Gibbs died on 17 July 1940, leaving a son and a daughter. Gibbs died suddenly at Thames Ditton Cottage Hospital on 5 October 1943, aged 75. He had practised at 3 Upper Wimpole Street, and lived at Whiteoaks, Vincents Close, Esher, Surrey.


Diseases of the penis; Priapism; Sterility; Treatment of acute gonorrhoea, in Quain's Dictionary of medicine.
Clinical results of French and English substitutes for Salvarsan 606. Lancet, 1915, 1, 990.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Lancet, 1943, 2, 494; Brit med J 1943, 2, 529, with eulogy by J Johnston Abraham, CBE, DSO, FRCS; information given by his son, Lieutenant G C Gibbs, Royal Artillery].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England