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Los autores del trabajo original con el nombre de síndrome de Pickwick, (Burwell CS, et al, Am J Med1956, 21:811-818) fueron tan perspicaces de reconocerlo en las pocas líneas en que se lo menciona dentro de una obra bien extensa.

“THE PICKWICK PAPERS”. Charles Dickens.


Fastened up behind the barouche was a hamper of spacious dimensions—one of those hampers which always awakens in a contemplative mind associations connected with cold fowls, tongues, and bottles of wine—and on the box sat a fat and red–faced boy, in a state of somnolency, whom no speculative observer could have regarded for an instant without setting down as the official dispenser of the contents of the before–mentioned hamper, when the proper time for their consumption should arrive.

Mr. Pickwick had bestowed a hasty glance on these interesting objects, when he was again greeted by his faithful disciple.

‘Pickwick—Pickwick,’ said Mr. Tupman; ‘come up here. Make haste.’
‘Come along, Sir. Pray, come up,’ said the stout gentleman. ‘Joe!—damn that boy, he’s gone to sleep again.—Joe, let down the steps.’ The fat boy rolled slowly off the box, let down the steps, and held the carriage door invitingly open. Mr. Snodgrass and Mr. Winkle came up at the moment.......

‘Room for you all, gentlemen,’ said the stout man. ‘Two inside, and one out. Joe, make room for one of these gentlemen on the box. Now, Sir, come along;’ and the stout gentleman extended his arm, and pulled first Mr. Pickwick, and then Mr. Snodgrass, into the barouche by main force. Mr. Winkle mounted to the box, the fat boy waddled to the same perch, and fell fast asleep instantly......

Everybody was excited, except the fat boy, and he slept as soundly as if the roaring of cannon were his ordinary lullaby......

‘Joe, Joe!’ said the stout gentleman, when the citadel was taken, and the besiegers and besieged sat down to dinner. ‘Damn that boy, he’s gone to sleep again. Be good enough to pinch him, sir—in the leg, if you please; nothing else wakes him—thank you. Undo the hamper, Joe.’
The fat boy, who had been effectually roused by the compression of a portion of his leg between the finger and thumb of Mr. Winkle, rolled off the box once again, and proceeded to unpack the hamper with more expedition than could have been expected from his previous inactivity......

Now, Joe, the fowls. Damn that boy; he’s gone to sleep again. Joe! Joe!’ (Sundry taps on the head with a stick, and the fat boy, with some difficulty, roused from his lethargy.)
‘Damn that boy,’ said the old gentleman, ‘he’s gone to sleep again.’
‘Very extraordinary boy, that,’ said Mr. Pickwick; ‘does he always sleep in this way?’
‘Sleep!’ said the old gentleman, ‘he’s always asleep. Goes on errands fast asleep, and snores as he waits at table.’
‘How very odd!’ said Mr. Pickwick.
‘Ah! odd indeed,’ returned the old gentleman; ‘I’m proud of that boy—wouldn’t part with him on any account—he’s a natural curiosity! Here, Joe—Joe—take these things away, and open another bottle—d’ye hear?’......

The fat boy rose, opened his eyes, swallowed the huge piece of pie he had been in the act of masticating when he last fell asleep, and slowly obeyed his master’s orders......

The horses were put in—the driver mounted—the fat boy clambered up by his side—farewells were exchanged—and the carriage rattled off. As the Pickwickians turned round to take a last glimpse of it, the setting sun cast a rich glow on the faces of their entertainers, and fell upon the form of the fat boy. His head was sunk upon his bosom; and he slumbered again.

Chapter 7 page 1
"Well," said the host, "I wish he'd come. Joe--Joe!"
The fat boy, who under the exciting influence of the morning did not appear to be more than three parts and a fraction asleep, emerged from the house......

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