Catalogue description Sir Archibald Gray 1880--1967 F. 1918

This record is held by Royal College of Physicians of London

Details of Portrait/X003T
Reference: Portrait/X003T
Title: Sir Archibald Gray 1880--1967 F. 1918

By Rodrigo Moynihan,


Halt length seated to left, arms by side, hands not seen; grey hair brushed flat, pale brown eyebrows, pale blue eyes, rimmed spectacles with gold frame, long thin lips, clear complexion; white collar, patterned blue tie, blue shirt, open bluish-grey coat, matching waistcoat, with chain through fourth button, his left shoulder higher than his right: mahogany chair back low on right: green background. Signed top right and dated Moynihan 56. There are pentimenti above the shoulders. On the back of the canvas is the stamp of the suppliers Roberson & Co. of 71 Parkway NW1.

Date: 1956
Held by: Royal College of Physicians of London, not available at The National Archives
Copies held at:

A photograph was taken for the National Photographic Record. 1952.

Language: English
Physical condition: Oils on canvas, 30 by 25 inches
Custodial history:

Property of the British Association of Dermatology, who commissioned the portrait and presented it to the sitter c. 1958. After Sir Archibald's death. it was given to the Association by his widow in 1968. and lent by them to the College.

Publication note:

als. from E. Gray. 25 April 1968; from S. C. Gold, 10 May 1968.

Administrative / biographical background:

Born in South Devon, and educated at Cheltenham College, University College Hospital, London, and later the University of Berne, Switzerland.


Gray set out to be a gynaecologist but UCH invited him to succeed Henry Radcliffe Crocker and he went to Berne to study dermatology. He took up the appointment on his return and was to be his generation's leading dermatologist in this country. Whatever speciality had been opened to him it is likely he would have been equally successful.


During World War I, he was attached to the general staff of the War Office and acted as consulting dermatologist in the Army Zone of the British Expeditionary Force, with the rank of lieutenant-colonel RAMC (TA). He was knighted in 1946.


From 1948 to 1962 he was adviser in dermatology to the Ministry of Health.


At the College he gave the Harveian Oration in 1951, and in 1952 he was President of the first International Dermatological Congress to be held after World War II, which gave him special pleasure.


Towards the end of his long life, illness incapacitated him though his mind remained alert and vigorous. He had been an 'excellent committee man'; he was not one for the limelight, but he liked to wield behind-the-scenes influence - the politics of his profession fascinated him. Physically he was a little man. He could be irascible at times, but never bore grudges.


Sir John Gray, FRS, former Secretary of the Medical Research Council, is his son.

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