A half-length portrait in profile of the eminent doctor wearing a brown coat and dark cloak, his white hair wavy and worn to his nape, his gaze introspective; an open book before him giving a glimpse of an inscription (bearing details of Barry's original painting).
See R. Burgess, Portraits of Doctors & Scientists in the Wellcome Institute, London 1973, 2163.1 (for another copy of the work after Barry by Harding, noted below).
James Barry's original painting of Christopher Nugent, painted in 1772, now hangs in the Victoria Art Gallery, Bath. Nugent was a successful doctor in Bath during the 1750s. Subsequently moving to London he moved in intellectual circles, and was a member of Dr Johnson’s literary club. Barry produced few portraits, but personal connections may have prompted this one, as artist and sitter lived in the same street.
This work closely resembles another copy of Barry's portrait by George Perfect Harding held by the Wellcome Collection: a grisaille watercolour signed 'Harding' and dated 1806 (Wellcome Library no. 7481i).