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Title A Barber-Surgeon Operating on a Boil on a Man's Forehead
Collection Wellcome Library
Artist Unknown
Previously attributed to Spanish School
Date Earliest about 1675
Date Latest probably 1800
Description By the seventeenth century the medical profession was divided between university-trained doctors and unqualified popular practioners who were often barbers as well as surgeons. The latter group became the subject of popular ridicule in seventeenth-century art. In this work the barber surgeon holds a comb whilst two other figures watch, on the right a man is holding a musical instrument. The faces of the men are highly characterised making several figures appear as caricatures. The work may be Spanish or French but is an eighteenth or nineteenth-century copy of an earlier painting.
Current Accession Number 45022i
Former Accession Number P 2758/1939
Subject figure; interior; still life; everyday life
Measurements 65.0 x 96.2 cm cm (estimate)
Material oil on canvas
Acquisition Details Bequeathed by Henry Solomon Wellcome 1936.
Provenance In the collection of Henry Solomon Wellcome 11 July 1923 (;).
Notes This work is in the style of Spanish painters such as Antonio Puga (Madrid 1602-1648), Miguel March (ca. 1638 - ca. 1670), and José Agustín Arrieta (1803-1874), but it might also be French.
Rights Owner (c) The Wellcome Trust
Author Dr Madeleine Korn
 

 

 

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