The Doctor's Visit

Object Details


The Doctor's Visit


Frans van Mieris the Elder (Dutch, 1635 - 1681)




Netherlands (Place created)




Oil on panel


44.5 x 31.1 cm (17 1/2 x 12 1/4 in.)

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In the foreground of this minutely detailed painting, a maid attempts to revive an elegant young woman who has fainted. In the background, a doctor examines a vial of the woman's urine. The dandyish doctor, whose ostentatious clothing suggests that he is a quack, was a stock figure in contemporary theater, and his inclusion here adds a touch of bufoonery. An erotic painting hangs above the fireplace, hinting that the woman suffers from lovesickness. A crying girl seen in the right background holds a burning ribbon, which was understood at the time as a symbol of pregnancy.

Frans van Mieris the Elder was well known for his finely painted works and genre pictures like this one. He often presented a theatrical and humorous view of daily life among the prosperous Dutch.


Probably commissioned by Cornelis Paets, Netherlandish, 1636 - 1694, sold for 1500 guilders.

before 1716

Johann Wilhelm, Elector Palatine of the Rhine and count Palatine of Neuberg, 1658 - 1716 (Düsseldorf, Germany), by inheritance to Karl Philipp, 1716.


Karl Philipp, Elector Palatine of the Rhine, 1661 - 1742 (Düsseldorf, Germany; Mannheim, Germany, from 1731-), probably by descent to Karl Theodor, Elector Palatine of the Rhine, 1742

1742 - 1799

Probably Karl Theodor, Elector Palatine of the Rhine (Elector of Bavaria from 1777), 1724 - 1799 (Mannheim, Germany, from 1742-1777; Munich, Germany, from 1777-1799), probably by inheritance to Maximilien IV Joseph, Elector of Bavaria

1799 -

Probably Maximilien IV. Joseph, Elector of Bavaria (Maximilien I. Joseph, King of Bavaria, from 1805), German, died 1825 (Munich, Germany), from the royal Hofgartengalerie to the Alte Pinakothek

1836 - 1935

Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, Alte Pinakothek (Munich, Germany), sold to A.G. Zurich, 1935.

1935 - 1937

A. G. Zurich (Eindhoven, The Netherlands)


Kunsthandel Firma D. Katz (Dieren, The Netherlands; Basel, Switzerland; The Hague, The Netherlands)

by 1952

Sidney van den Bergh-Myers (The Hague, The Netherlands)

by 1960

Hendrikus Egbertus ten Cate, Dutch, 1868 - 1955 (Almelo, The Netherlands)

J. van Duijvendijk (Scheveningen, The Netherlands)

by 1967 -

H. Kastengren (Stockholm, Sweden)

- 1975

Private Collection [sold, Sotheby's, London, March 19, 1975, lot 13, to Joseph Leegenhoek.]

1975 - 1977

Joseph Leegenhoek (Paris, France), sold to Jean-Louis Dupré, 1977.

1977 - 1986

Jean-Louis Dupré (Paris, France) [sold, Dupré sale, Sotheby's, Monte Carlo, June 19, 1986, lot 26, to the J. Paul Getty Museum.]

Tentoonstelling van 16de en 17de eeuwsche hollandsche en vlaamsche schilderi (May 7 - June 4, 1938) (Cat. 46)
  • Arti et Amicitiae, (Amsterdam), May 7 to June 4, 1938
Kerst tentoonstelling: Nederlandse meesters uit particulier bezit (1952 to 1953) (Cat. 46)
  • Stedelijk Museum Het Prinsenhof, (Delft), 1952 to 1953
Holländska Mästare i Svensk Ago (1967) (Cat. 104)
  • Nationalmuseum, (Stockholm), 1967
Frans van Mieris (1635-1681) (October 1, 2005 to May 21, 2006) (Cat. 104)
  • Mauritshuis, (The Hague), October 1, 2005 to January 22, 2006
  • National Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.), February 26 to May 21, 2006
The Finest Pearls of Art - The Painting Collection of the Prince Elector Johann Wilhem of the Palatinate (February 2 to May 17, 2009) (Cat. 104)
  • Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, (Munich), February 4 to May 17, 2009
Johannes Vermeer: Woman in Blue Reading a Letter (February 16 to March 31, 2013) (Cat. 104)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), February 15 to March 31, 2013
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