A sick girl lies in bed, propped up by pillows. The doctor visiting her is having his glass filled by the maid. The girl is probably suffering from a ‘wandering womb’, an illness that mainly affected young virgins. Although the condition was taken very seriously by doctors in those days, Steen sees the comical side of it. The dogs on the staircase show the remedy for the ailment – the girl must find a husband as soon as possible.


  • Title: The Doctor's Visit
  • Creator: Steen, Jan
  • Date Created: c. 1665 - 1668
  • Physical Dimensions: h60.5 cm x w48.5 cm
  • Provenance: Johan van Schuylenburch sale, The Hague, 20 September 1735 (Lugt 453), no. 71 (175 guilders); Isaak Hoogenbergh sale, Amsterdam, 10 April 1743 (Lugt 576), no. 38 (for 150 guilders to Lormier); Willem Lormier sale, The Hague, 4 July 1763 (Lugt 1307), no. 256 (for 460 guilders to T.P.C. Haag for Prince William V); Prince William V, The Hague, 1763-1795; confiscated by the French, transferred to the Muséum central des arts/Musée Napoléon (Musée du Louvre), Paris, 1795-1815; Royal Picture Gallery, housed in the Prince William V Gallery, The Hague, 1816; transferred to the Mauritshuis in 1822
  • Type: Painting
  • Medium: Oil on panel

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