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Inventory no. 23518 - Former Display Label


This painting is traditionally said to depict Dr James Paxton (1786-1860), but since the lecturer is wearing the robes of an Oxford Doctor of Medicine and Paxton was not a member of the University of Oxford this cannot be the case. The picture more probably shows Dr William Greenhill lecturing to a class of medical students in his house at 91 High Street, Oxford (from the window of which a view of the Radcliffe Camera with the Bodleian tower in the background may be obtained through the opening between St Mary's Church and All Souls). Greenhill occupied 91 High Street from 1839 until 1851, and is known to have boarded medical students there (Census Return for 1841).

William Alexander Greenhill was educated at Rugby School under Dr Thomas Arnold (1795-1842), whose great-niece, Laura, he married. Greenhill obtained his B.M. degree from Trinity College, Oxford, in 1839, and his D.M. in 1840. He was Physician to the Radcliffe Infirmary (1839-1851), and Medical Officer of Health for Oxford (1844-1850). He was also churchwarden at St Mary's under John Henry Newman (1801-1890). In 1851 Greenhill left Oxford for health reasons and practised in Hastings for the rest of his life.

Presented by the Radcliffe Infirmary

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