A young man wearing his top hat tilted to the side, a cravat, a waistcoat, and a fluffy coat is seen smoking a cigar and carrying a book under his arm while smugly looking sideways.
The illustration is complemented by the following quotation from William Wordsworth’s poem The tables Turned:
We murder to dissect.
The type of the medical student is described in detail by P. Leigh, in the accompanying literary sketch:
A young gentleman, of about five feet eight inches in height, with dull darkish eyes, and eyebrows to match—interlacing over the root of the nose, the last-mentioned feature being large, long, and fleshy, and in excellent keeping with a couple of thick projecting lips. The complexion is a kind of smoky tallow; the forehead is narrow and sloping, but the contour of the rest of the head is concealed by a four-and-ninepenny gossamer, with a very narrow brim and sundry indentations in front, worn sideways in the most approved fashion of billiard-room frequenters, and visitors of night-houses. A black neckerchief, tied à la Ben Brace, a very high and not very clean shirt-collar, a rough flushing jacket garnished with broad black bone buttons, a very long waistcoat of a shawl pattern, and blue shaggy trousers splashed with mud at their terminations, complete the costume. The tout-ensemble forms an illustration of “December fashions for Gentlemen,” as modified in the person of a probationary guardian of the public health” in statu pupillari,”—that is, in the course of “walking the hospitals.”