Research Article| Volume 25, ISSUE 2, P199, March 2000


      The primary responsibility of a journal editor is to oversee the peer review process and exercise final disposition of submitted manuscripts. Ideally, he must be imbued with Solomonic wisdom so as to strike the proper balance between the publication of all that is new or novel and the adherence to rigid standards of scientific accuracy. As the editor struggles to accomplish these two opposing objectives, he is often stereotypically perceived as a focused, hypercritical individual who functions in ivory-towered isolation. Although this may be a fair characterization for the most part, there is a more important trait peculiar to a good editor: a passion for the coupling of words and ideas … the ability to use specific terminology to express precise thoughts and concepts, clearly and concisely. While an editor usually demands such lucid discourse from contributing authors, from time to time he emerges from his reclusive editorial habitat and presents his own written thoughts and concepts. In this issue, we present writings from each of the three former editors of The Journal of Hand Surgery, Joseph Boyes, Adrian Flatt, and William Bora, as pertinent examples of their wisdom and wordsmithing. We trust you will appreciate these dissertations.
      Additionally, we present a review of the development of tendon surgery by Dr James Strickland, the first in a series of articles in this silver anniversary volume that discuss the advancement of specialized areas of hand surgery over the Journal's quarter century time span.
      Finally, we thank Dr William Newmeyer, who retires as deputy editor, for his many contributions to the Journal. Dr Newmeyer has been a member of the editorial board for 13 years, appointed initially as associate editor in 1987 and subsequently as deputy editor in 1990. Much of what a deputy editor does is unheralded, behind the scenes, and unnoticed: critiquing and editing manuscripts, rewriting those that are publishable but not readable, advising the editor on controversial issues, and checking and re-checking copy editor alterations to ensure accuracy of the published information. Notwithstanding, these activities are vital to the editorial process of a successful scientific journal. Over the years, Dr Newmeyer has performed a lion's share of these tasks diligently, unassumingly, and without fanfare. His contributions have been invaluable and will be greatly missed.