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A village barber-surgeon standing in front of his shop, holding a razor and a lancet; in the distance are the village stocks. Coloured etching by J. Bretherton after H.W. Bunbury.

  • Bunbury, Henry William, 1750-1811.
Date
1 March 1772
Reference
29464i
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view A village barber-surgeon standing in front of his shop, holding a razor and a lancet; in the distance are the village stocks. Coloured etching by J. Bretherton after H.W. Bunbury.

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Credit: A village barber-surgeon standing in front of his shop, holding a razor and a lancet; in the distance are the village stocks. Coloured etching by J. Bretherton after H.W. Bunbury. Wellcome Collection. Public Domain Mark

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About this work

Description

L.M. is an abbreviation for Licentiate in medicine, a British qualification to practise medicine or surgery or both, bestowed by a bishop or archbishop. The motto "In utrumque paratus" (prepared for both) refers to barbering and surgery, represented respectively by the razor and the lancet; it is derived from Virgil ("ad utrumque paratus", Aeneid II.61). Under his arm he holds a bowl for use in shaving or bloodletting. A bob wig is one which turns up into curls at the back. A bob major is a peal of bells, but is here used presumably to mean a long bob wig. A scratch wig is a small, short wig. A washball is a ball of soap; a breeches-ball is a ball of composition for washing breeches (definitions from the Oxford English dictionary). Scotch pills (also called Anderson's pills) were marketed as laxatives.

Publication/Creation

[London] (No. 134 New Bond Street) : Publish'd as the Act directs by J. Bretherton, 1 March 1772.

Physical description

1 print : etching, with watercolour ; image 21.8 x 15.8 cm

Lettering

The village barber. LM. L'Inghilterra. H.W. Bunbury delin: 1772 ; I. Bretherton f.

References note

British Museum, Catalogue of political and personal satires, vol. IV, London 1883, no. 4757

Lettering note

The barber's shop-sign is a painting of a wig with lettering "Barn: factotum, dresses shaves bleeds &c. In utrumque paratus". A notice board fixed to the wall advertises "Bobs, bob-majors, scratches & other wigs made here; also sausages, washballs, black puddings, Scotch pills, powder for the itch, redherrings, breeches balls, & small beer by the maker". "L'Inghilterra" is in Italian to match "La Francia" in the pendant print

Reference

Wellcome Library no. 29464i

Type/Technique

Languages

  • English


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