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Members of the British Medical Association, represented as gladiators, conceding the introduction of the National Health Service to Aneurin Bevan, represented as Nero. Drawing by E.H. Shepard, 1946.

  • Shepard, Ernest H. (Ernest Howard), 1879-1976
  • Pictures

About this work


"The medical profession was initially reluctant to participate in Beveridge's plan, which required work within a state-managed system and restriction on their capacity to determine their own incomes. The election of a Labour government in 1945, which put Aneurin Bevan in as Minister ofHealth, created new difficulties and resulted in a breakdown of negotiations with the British Medical Association (BMA). Bevan exploited existing divisions in the medical profession between generally wealthy consultants and comparatively poorly paid general practitioners to achieve their eventual agreement to work within the NHS." (Liam Donaldson, Essential public health, Petroc Press, forthcoming (2002) (e-mail from Dr Eileen Smith, Office of the Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, 5 June 2002)



Physical description

1 drawing : pencil, pen and ink ; sight 32.4 x 24.8 cm


Morituri te salutant. E.H. Shepard

References note

Reproduced: Punch, 3 April 1946, p. 291

Lettering note

Below Bevan is a roundel inscribed "AN. BEV. IMP."


Wellcome Library no. 2349i

Terms of use

Copyright is currently (2002) held by the Punch Cartoon Library & Archive, 3 Hans Crescent, London SW1X 0LN, tel: +44 (0)20 7225 6793/6710 (e-mails from Nick Roberts, Punch Cartoon Library, 1 July 2002, and from Janice Swanson, Curtis Brown Group, 5 June 2002)



  • Latin

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