Views & Reviews Medical Classics

Marriage A-la-Mode

BMJ 2009; 339 doi: (Published 05 August 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;339:b3143
  1. Michael Baum, professor emeritus of surgery and visiting professor of medical humanities, University College London,
  2. Simona Di Nepi, art historian and formerly assistant curator, National Gallery, London
  1. michael{at}

    London’s National Gallery contains a rich source of material that is of value in the teaching of doctors as well as art historians. Among our favourites is Hogarth’s Marriage A-la-Mode, a set of six paintings made by the artist in 1743 as models for engravings. First published two years later, the prints became instantly popular and have never ceased to be reproduced. After passing through the hands of several collectors the famous series entered the National Gallery in 1824 with the founding purchase of financier John Julius Angerstein’s collection.

    Its sequence of …

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