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A Patient at Home

© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Wellcome Collection

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Commissioned by Horace Joules (1902–1977), a consultant physician at the Central Middlesex Hospital, who emphasized to medical students the importance of knowing the occupation and social background of patients. The old man in the painting was a bronchitic and arthritic patient of the hospital: he lived in Harlesden. He was painted in his hospital bed, but the room was painted from outside the window of his dwelling, as the artist was deterred from entering by the smell. She shows an interior with plaster peeling off the wall and ceiling. On the left is a fireplace, and, next to it, an open cupboard in which is possibly a pile of coals. The old man is in bed. Very close to the picture plane is a medicine bottle of "Mist. Expect.", an expectorant mixture routinely prescribed for bronchitics.

Wellcome Collection



A Patient at Home




oil on canvas


H 71.5 x W 91 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

commissioned by Horace Joules; presented by Dr Keith Ball

Work type



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Wellcome Collection

183 Euston Road, London, Greater London NW1 2BE England

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