Thomas Jeeves Horder 1871 – 1955

Thomas Jeeves Horder 1st Baron Horder of Ashford 1871 – 1955 (GCVO, 1938; (KCVO, 1925); Kt, 1918; MD; BSc; Hon. DCL (Dunelm.); Hon. MD (Melbourne and Adelaide); FRCP. St. Barts.) Physician to Edward VIII, George VI and Queen Elizabeth II; and also physician to two prime ministers, McDonald and Bonar Law and labour leader Hugh Gaitskell; Consulting Physician to the Royal Orthopaedic and Royal Northern Hospitals, and Honorary Consulting Physician to the Ministry of Pensions; President of the Medical Society of London, the Fellowship for Freedom in Medicine, and the Family Planning Association; Consulting Physician at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital and many other prestigious roles and titles.

Thomas Horder was the Head of an investigation into the work of Albert Abrams, the inventor of the Radionics machine, and of his disciple, homeopath William Ernest Boyd, the inventor of the Emanometer.

The Thomas Horder Report vindicated both men.

In 1925 Sir Thomas Horder and his committee produced a report on their tests on William Ernest Boyd’s Emanometer, a modification of the diagnostic technique developed by Albert Abrams which lead to the development of Radionics, a technique of distant healing used today.

These carefully controlled trials were astoundingly successful and demonstrated the ability of the operators to accurately identify materials presented to them.

It stands today as one of the most successful demonstrations ever of the accuracy of an analytical technique used in complementary medicine.

The original report has long been out of print and is extremely difficult to find. In this book the original Horder Report is reprinted in full and is prefaced by an introduction by Tony Scofield on the Emanometer and its inventor, William Ernest Boyd.

In 1924, a British committee, The Thomas Horder committee, was put together to investigate an adaptation or modification of Abrams’ E.R.A. apparatus and technique by Dr. W.E. Boyd of Glasgow….

A report of the committee’s findings were recorded in both The Lancet and the British Medical Journal in January of 1925. Basically, the tests of William Ernest Boyd were at first complete failures.

He was asked to differentiate between two different substances placed in the Dynamizer at random. His results were much less than what would be expected by chance.

A physicist was also employed for six months to determine if “any effect measurable or detectable by orthodox physical apparatus was associated with the so-called ‘reactions’. No such change could be found, and this aspect of the work was ultimately abandoned.”

However, after complaining about electronic interference, William Ernest Boyd undertook further tests at his insulated residence with Whatley Smith of the committee in which he was able to differentiate between substances with remarkable accuracy.

For example, he determined when a sample of saliva on filter paper was placed in the Dynamizer correctly 25 times in a row. This was estimated at being done by chance alone at 1 in 33,554,432. Most of the other tests thereafter yielded nearly 100 per cent accuracy….

The entire committee repeated the tests later with Dr. Boyd and obtained similar results. The entire committee was “satisfied” that the results were accurate.

Overall the committee obtained numerous negative results with other E.R.A. practitioners of the Albert Abrams and William Ernest Boyd variety when dealing with diagnosing diseases, much like the Scientific American.

However, they obtained some success from William Ernest Boyd in differentiating certain non pathological substances such as “sulfer” and saliva.

Their four stated conclusions were as follows:

(1) That certain substances, when placed in proper relation to the Emanometer of William Ernest Boyd, produce, beyond any reasonable doubt, changes in the abdominal wall of “the subject” of a kind which may be detected by percussion. This is tantamount to the statement that the fundamental proposition underlying, in common, the original and certain other forms of apparatus designed for the purpose of eliciting the so-called electronic reactions of Albert Abrams, is established to a very high degree of probability.

(2) That no evidence justifying this deduction is yet available from the work of those who practice with the apparatus as yet designed by Albert Abrams himself.

(3) That the phenomena appear to be extremely elusive, and highly susceptible to interference, so that in order to obtain reliable results it is necessary to take the most elaborate precautions, particularly as regards the elimination of effects due to irrelevant objects.

(4) That it would be premature at the present time even to hazard in the most tentative manner any hypothesis as to the physical phenomena here described….

Again, the conclusions reached by Sir Thomas Horder’s Committee in England, and read before the Royal Society of Medicine, January 16, 1925—a full year after Abrams’ death—sustained in every essential point the fundamental proposition underlying the Electronic Reactions of Albert Abrams.

This was a voluntary committee of English scientists who had undertaken the investigation of the ERA at the instigation of one of their number, Dr. C. B. Heald, medical adviser to the Director of Civic Aviation, who authorized the investigation.

Casting about for some prominent man to head his committee, Dr. Heald found Sir Thomas Horder, a noted cancer expert and personal physician to the Prince of Wales. With them were associated Major H. P. T. Lefroy, head of wireless research at the British Air Ministry; M. D. Hart and W. Whateley Smith, engaged in physical research on behalf of the War Office; Mr. H. St. G. Anson, a trained physicist, and Mr. E. T. Dingwell, Research Officer of the British Society for Psychic Research.

The Report stated:  “This Communication is a joint effort by individuals who possess between them, knowledge of physics, psychology, clinical medicine, and electro-therapeutics.”

The personnel of the Horder Committee, the circumstances under which its investigations were conducted, and its manifest unfriendliness to the claims of Albert Abrams, all serve to enhance the value of its scientific findings and to render even more significant its vindication of those claims.

The findings of this Committee, embodied in its report, were based on tests and experiments made in the presence of all its members by William Ernest Boyd, an Albert Abrams disciple and homeopath of Glasgow, who was selected by the Committee to make the tests.

And even Dr. Fishbein, discussing the Horder Report in “Medical Follies” (pp. 112-116), reluctantly testifies: “The whole Committee was satisfied, and drew the conclusion that these experiments establish to a very high degree of probability the fundamental proposition underlying the apparatus designed for eliciting the electronic reactions of Albert Abrams.”

Thomas Jeeves Horder was … the son of Albert Horder of Shaftesbury, a Dorset draper. Jeeves was his mother’s maiden name. He was educated privately, and at the University of London and St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London.

Thomas Jeeves Horder was an English physician. He was physician to Edward VIII and George VI, Extra Physician to Queen Elizabeth II, Consulting Physician to the Royal Orthopaedic and Royal Northern Hospitals, and Honorary Consulting Physician to the Ministry of Pensions.

Horder was a great bedside teacher, revered by his staff and students. His interests were wide ranging: he was president of a number of societies, including the Medical Society of London, the Fellowship for Freedom in Medicine, and the Family Planning Association. Horder was born in Shaftesbury, Dorset, England. He studied medicine at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, where from 1912 he was successively assistant physician, physician and consulting physician.

He was knighted in 1918, made a baronet in 1923, and baron in 1933.

Thomas Horder was the son of Albert Horder, of Shaftesbury. He was educated privately, and at the University of London and St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London. Horder served as Captain (temp. Major) Royal Army Medical Corps; Adviser to Minister of Food and President of Food Education Society; Chairman of Committee advising Ministry of Labour and National Service on medical questions connected with Recruiting; Chairman of Shelter Hygiene Committee of Ministry of Home Security and Ministry of Health; Hon. Consulting Physician to Ministry of Pensions; Consulting Physician Cancer Hospital, Fulham; President, Harveian Society of London; Chairman of British Empire Cancer Campaign and Chairman Advisory Scientific Committee; Chairman of Advisory Committee, Mount Vernon Hospital; President of Fellowship of Medicine; Consulting Physician to the Royal Orthopædic Hospital, to the Royal Northern Hospital and to the Hospitals of Bury St Edmunds, Swindon, Bishop’s Stortford, Leatherhead, Beckenham and Finchley.

He was also a member of numerous associations and committees.

He was awarded GCVO, 1938; (KCVO, 1925); Kt, 1918; MD; BSc; Hon. DCL (Dunelm.); Hon. MD (Melbourne and Adelaide); FRCP. In 1923 he was created Thomas Jeeves Horder, Baronet of Shaston; in 1933 created, 1st Baron Horder, of Ashford in the County of Southampton.

He also held the positions of Deputy Lieutenant County of Hampshire; Extra Physician to the Queen (formerly Extra Physician to King George VI); and Consulting Physician to St Bartholomew’s Hospital.

The Thomas Horder Archives are held at the Kings College London Archive.

Thomas Horder wrote Cerebro-Spinal Fever, Essentials of Medical Diagnosis, coauthored with A E Gow, Health and a Day, Health and Social Welfare, The Philosophy of Jesus coauthored with H Roberts, Clinical Pathology in Practice, Oxford War Primers, Medical Notes, A Preliminary Communication concerning the “Electronic Reactions” of Abrams with special reference to the Emanometer Technique of Boyd, Obscurantism, Rheumatism, Diet and Rheumatism, Fifty Years of Medicine, The chemistry and nutrition of flour and bread.

3 thoughts on “Thomas Jeeves Horder 1871 – 1955”

  1. I am very proud to read this biography about Lord Horder who was my relation and glad to know that he headed the Committee examining homeopathy and the emanometer. My Mother’s name was Joanna Horder and Lord Horder was her grandfather’s cousin, I believe. We had quite a few famous doctors in the family, including Dr. John Horder, OBE, my Mother’s first cousin, who was President of the Royal College of Physicians. He is still alive aged 90.

  2. I too am a distant relative of Thomas Jeeves Horder, he was my mothers great uncle. My mothers maiden name is Joyce Horder. She has often spoke to me about a family member who was a physician to the royal family but didn’t know much more. Now with the help of the internet I’ve been able to fill in some gaps for her. It feels really good.

  3. When I was the minister of the Free Methodist Church in Penn (Bucks) one of our elderly female members recalled her nervousness when, working at the switchboard of the local Post Office, she responded to Lord Horder as he said “Kindly put me through to the Palace”.

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