James Barry

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Barry as a young man in a red miliary jacket
Portrait of James Barry, painted circa 1813-1816
James Miranda Stuart Barry (1795–1865) was a British Army surgeon and Inspector General of Hospitals. He graduated from the University of Edinburgh Medical School, and served in India and South Africa. He lived as a male throughout his life, but at his death he was found to have been a woman. He was buried in Kensal Green cemetery.

He is said to have been born in Dublin as a girl, named Margaret Ann Bulkley, and raised as a boy.[1] His mother was the sister of the painter James Barry. Other sources state that he was raised as a boy and was possibly a genetic male with Klinefelter's syndrome.[2]

The novel James Miranda Barry by Patricia Dunkley is a fictionalised account of Barry's life.


  1. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/8364465.stm#margaret "Five British heroes overlooked by history", BBC News 17 November 2009
  2. P R Kirby , "Dr James Barry, Controversial South African medical figure", South African Medical Journal 25 April 1970. Quoted in Vern L Bullough, Sex, Society and History, New York: Science History Publications, 1976. Chapter on "Transsexualism in History"