George III: a revised view of the royal malady

J Hist Neurosci. 1997 Apr;6(1):38-49. doi: 10.1080/09647049709525684.


George III of England's episodic psychotic illness is described. The data has previously been used to substantiate the diagnosis of an unlikely hereditary metabolic disease, porphyria. A scientific perspective, aimed at removing psychiatric diagnosis from dependence on subjective evaluations, is corrected by the diagnosis of a mood disorder. His unipolar mania of late onset is a syndrome, the sine qua non of bipolar disorder, in this instance complicated by the toxicity of quinine, antimony, and purgatives.

Publication types

  • Biography
  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • Bipolar Disorder / history*
  • Famous Persons
  • History, 18th Century
  • Humans
  • Porphyrias / history*
  • United Kingdom

Personal name as subject

  • I I George