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A figure comprised of medicine bottles and tablets, representing the patent medicine business, dances behind a pensive Lloyd George; representing attitudes to the introduction of the National Insurance Act of 1911. Wood engraving by B. Partridge, 1912.

  • Partridge, Bernard, 1861-1945
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About this work


Dialogue includes: Patent medicine (to the author of the Insurance Bill). "Never mind, dear fellow, I'll stand by you - to the death!"

On the desk in front of Lloyd George is a paper entitled: "National Insurance Bill", through a window a banner reads: "Doctors demand a living wage." The 'medicine bottle-figure' is covered with various inscriptions which read: "Dr. Dulcamara's magic cure-all the only infallible remedy for ..." a list follows of various ailments. The figure's teeth are the word: "Pills", and its legs and arms are pieces of pill-packaging in the form of tubes with printed lettering. Dulcamara is the name of a medicine vendor in the opera L'elisir d'amore (1832). The implication seems to be that the drug industry supported Lloyd George's National Insurance Bill


[London], 1912.

Physical description

1 print : wood engraving ; border 24.9 x 18 cm


Unqualified assistance. B.P.


Wellcome Library no. 15395i


  • English

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