Dutch School (Leiden). Pupil of Rembrandt. The first, and once the most popular, of the Dutch genre painters.
LONDON, NATIONAL GALLERY
THE POULTERER’S SHOP Through an arched window; a young woman holding a pail is buying a hare from the shopwoman. Two other figures are in the background. On the window-sill are dead birds; above, on the left, a bird-cage. The lower front of the shop, under the window, is decorated with a bas-relief of children with a goat. Signed.
Purchased with the Peel Collection in 1871.
THE DROPSICAL PATIENT In a lofty room, near a window to the left, in front of a bed, an elderly woman is seated, turned slightly to the left, with eyes upturned. A girl in tears is kneeling at her side holding her hand, and a servant is bending towards her and offering her some medicine. On the right stands the doctor in an ample cloak, in profile to left, his eyes fixed on the glass vessel of liquid which he holds up to the light.
Signed and dated 1663
THE YOUNG MOTHER Round top. At a window on the left of a lofty room a young woman is seated facing us.On her lap are a small pillow and a garment which she is cutting with scissors. In front of her to the right is a cradle, and a girl kneeling behind it pulling off the cover to look at the child. The window is open, and the light falls on the group and the numberless accessories heaped up on either side. Behind the window is a pillar with a staircase winding round it leading to a gallery from which hangs a chandelier,
Through an archway is seen a woman reading in another room, while another hangs a kettle over the fire. On the window are the arms of the Adricheun family.
Smith considers this the second best of Dou’s pictures, The Dropsical Patient being the best.
THE NIGHT SCHOOL On a small wooden table set against the wall of a lofty room on the left a candle is burning which lights up the figure of the schoolmaster and four pupils. He is sitting behind the table, his right elbow on a desk, and his left hand uplifted as he admonishes a girl who is standing in the centre. Between these two, and near to us, is a girl bending over the table, in profile, reading a paper which is spread on the table in the light of the candle. To the left, on this side of the table are a youth seated and a girl standing, who are studying the contents of a large slate or tablet held by the former. A heavy curtain is looped upon the right. In the foreground is a large lantern on the floor, but its light is not diffused to any extent. In the far background another group at a table is discernible in the dim light.