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A barber-surgeon extracting stones from a woman's head; symbolising the expulsion of 'folly' (insanity). Watercolour by J. Cats, 1787, after B. Maton.

Maton, Bartholomaeus, 1643 or 1646-

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view A barber-surgeon extracting stones from a woman's head; symbolising the expulsion of 'folly' (insanity). Watercolour by J. Cats, 1787, after B. Maton.

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Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
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Credit: A barber-surgeon extracting stones from a woman's head; symbolising the expulsion of 'folly' (insanity). Watercolour by J. Cats, 1787, after B. Maton. Credit: Wellcome Collection. Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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About this work

Description

The images of a surgeon (often itinerant) making an incision in a patient's head in order to extract 'stones' (implying madness in the individual) do not represent an actual operation, but are allegorical scenes refering to the subduction of 'folly' (madness) from the body. See further: W. Schupbach, loc. cit.

Physical description

1 painting : watercolour ; image 41 x 31.9 cm

Lettering

J. Cats del naar een schilderj van van Tol ... a Gouda. Ao. 1787

Publications note

W. Schupbach, 'A new look at the cure of folly', Medical history, 1978, 22: 267-281

Reference

Wellcome Library no. 21154i

Reproduction note

For painting by B. Maton see: W. Bernt, Die Niederländischen Maler des 17. Jahrhunderts, Munich 1962, pl. 191


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