Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

The village surgeon

This painting, titled Village Surgeon, is rich in layers and details. In the center of the image the surgeon, quite likely a barber-surgeon, scrapes carefully at the skin of his patient. In the background, a workbench is covered in instruments, two other figures examine potential remedies, a broom is knocked over as if to indicate haste, and a dog sits suspiciously at the feet of its master. This scene, typical of the time, is attributed to Johannes Natus, a Dutch genre painter who worked between 1658 and 1662 and specialized in landscapes and portrayals of rural life regarded to be reminiscent of Italian paintings.

Painting of a village surgeon's office
Village Surgeon. Attributed to Johannes Natus. Mid- 17th century. Philadelphia Museum of Art.



Fall 2019   |  Sections  |  Surgery

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