Osmond, Humphrey (Fortescue)

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Osmond, Humphrey (Fortescue)


Psychiatrist who studied psychedelics and parapsychology. He was born July 1, 1917, at Milford, Surrey, England. He studied at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, Canada, receiving a certificate in psychiatry in 1952; Guy's Hospital, London, England, receiving a M.R.C.S. and L.R.C.P. in 1942; and St. George's Hospital, London receiving a diploma in psychological medicine in 1949. During World War II, Osmond served as a surgeon lieutenant in the Royal Navy (1942-47), and afterward served in various positions in hospitals in London. In 1953, he moved to Canada as a physician superintendent and director of research (1953-61) at Saskatchewan Hospital, Weyburn, Canada. In 1961, he became the director of the Bureau of Research in Neurology and Psychiatry for the State of New Jersey.

In the 1950s, Osmond became interested in psychedelics, the study of mental activities and states of consciousness in relation to drugs and other pharmacological substances. His research then veered into parapsychology and the study of imagery in mediumship. He authored papers and books from his two decades of research. He was co-chairman with Emilio Servadio at the Conference on Parapsychology and Pharmacology held in 1959 at St. Paul de Vence, France.


Osmond, Humphrey. "A Call for Imaginative Theory." International Journal of Parapsychology (Autumn 1959).

Osmond, Humphrey, and Abram Hoffer. The Chemical Basis of Clinical Psychiatry. Springfield, Ill.: Thomas, 1960.

Osmond, Humphrey, and Abram Hoffer. The Hallucinogens. New York: Academic Press, 1967.

Osmond, Humphrey, and Bernard Aaronson, eds. Psychedelics: The Uses and Implications of Hallucinogenic Drugs. Cambridge, Mass.: Schenkman, 1971.

Osmond, Humphrey, H. Yaker, and F. Cheek. The Future of Time: Man's Temporal Environment. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1971.

Pleasants, Helene, ed. Biographical Dictionary of Parapsychology. New York: Helix Press, 1964.