Painting, 'Francis Matthew Schutz in his bed' by William Hogarth (1697-1764), oil on canvas, about 1755 to 1760; 63 cm x 75.5 cm; upper edge 'Vixi puellis nuper idoneus &c'(Not long ago I kept it in good order for the girls); lower edge 'Cuius octavum trepidavit aetas claudere lustrum'
This painting shows an elegant bedroom painted in jewel colours, with sumptuous silk hangings and ornate woods. A shaft of bright light from the left illuminates the subject of the painting: Francis Matthew Schutz, third cousin of Frederick, Prince of Wales, vomiting into a chamber pot. Schutz's wife Susan, exasperated by her husband's drinking and womanising, commissioned William Hogarth to paint this unusual subject to shame her husband into reforming. Latin verses by the satirical Roman poet Horace, visible at upper and lower edges of the canvas, underline the message. They suggest that, while a young man is ready for anything, one over forty is far too old for such bad behaviour!
Schutz's descendants considered this painting so disrespectful to his memory that they had the vomiting overpainted with a pamphlet. It was only when the painting was acquired by Norwich Castle in 1990 that the overpainting was removed and the original revealed again.