Born July 23, 1773, Millmount near Kilkenny; died November 16, 1843, aged 70 years.
In 1790, he studied arts at Trinity College Dublin and apprenticed himself to the surgeon Philip Woodroffe in Dr Steevens Hospital.
1795, BA in Arts, TCD, and received his Diploma from the RCSI.
1797, MD thesis, De Venesectione, work done in Edinburgh, where he worked with Astley Cooper.
In 1802, Colles applied for the job of Professor of Anatomy in TCD, he did not get the job and he brought the person who got the job to court (Dr William Hartigan), but failed to get him ousted. Colles was then appointed as president of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland in 1802.
In 1804, Colles was appointed as Professor of Anatomy and Physiology and Surgery in the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.
In 1830, Colles was again elected as president of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.
In 1836, Colles resigned from the chair in surgery after 32 years.
Colles was appointed as president of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland at a relatively young age. He was subsequently appointed as the Professor of Physiology and Anatomy. His contributions can be observed from his eponymous fracture, fascia and ligament, Colles is also cited as the first person to ligate the subclavian artery in 1811, and 1813 (published 1815) .
The inguinal ligament is the upturned end of the external oblique aponeurosis. It joins the anterior superior iliac spine to the pubic tubercle. It has several interesting extensions on its medial insertion. One part extends deeply to form the lacunar and pectineal ligaments (Cooper's ligament) and the other is the reflected part which curves up as a triangular band to pass behind the superficial ring, anterior to the conjoint tendon to interdigitate with its fellow from the opposite side at the linea alba; this reflected part is termed Colles' ligament.
Colles had the distinction of being appointed as president of the Royal College of Surgeons twice.
One of his sons (also Abraham Colles) was also appointed to be president of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.