The authors would like to thank Marieke de Winkel for clarifying the terminology of the figure’s dress and for pointing out the reference of the gorget, hanger, and rapier to militia membership (personal communication with Dominique Surh, September 2013, correspondence kept on file at the Leiden Gallery). Two militia companies, named after their patron saints Sebastiaan and Joris (George), kept the citizens of Leiden safe. The figure’s dress is similar to the painting attributed to the young Dou, A Leiden Militia Member with an Arms Still-Life, in the Szépművészeti Múzeum, Budapest; see Bob van den Boogart, “A Leiden Militia Member with an Arms Still-Life,” in The Mystery of the Young Rembrandt, ed. Ernst van de Wetering and Bernhard Schnackenburg (Exh. cat. Kassel, Staatliche Museen Gemaldegalerie Alte Meister; Amsterdam, Museum Het Rembrandthuis) (Amsterdam, 2002), no. 68, 336–39.
The pendants remained together until they entered different collections when sold at auction in 1906.
The Statenbijbel, the Dutch translation of the Bible as authorized by the Synod of the Reformed Church and the States General, was printed in Leiden in 1637.
See also Arthur K. Wheelock Jr. and Adele F. Seeff, eds., The Public and Private in Dutch Culture of the Golden Age, conference proceedings, University of Maryland, College Park, 1993 (Newark, 2000).
The earliest known provenance of Portrait of a Gentleman with a Walking Stick dates from the early twentieth century when it and the pendant Portrait of a Lady (fig. 1) were in the Marquis de Forbin-Janson Collection in Paris. The two paintings were acquired by separate owners when they were sold at public auction in 1906, with the male portrait being purchased by the Baron von Goldschmidt Rothschild in Frankfurt.
Marieke de Winkel similarly dates the pendant Portrait of a Lady in Pasadena to ca. 1645 based on the details of her dress (personal communication with Dominique Surh, September 2013, correspondence kept on file at the Leiden Collection). Ronni Baer, however, dates the portraits to about 1640–44. See Ronni Baer, “The Paintings of Gerrit Dou (1613–1675),” 3 vols. (Ph.D. diss., New York University, 1990), no. 35 a–b. On the portrait in St. Petersburg, see cat. 36.1–36.4.
The Dutch word kastoor (beaver hat) derives from the Latin (and French) word castor, meaning beaver. As French trappers in the Canadian wilderness caught the furriest beavers, European hatters preferred those pelts. Refer to the Old-Dutch Online Dictionary.
Based on age and appearance, it is possible that the subject of this portrait is depicted (on the far right) in an earlier group portrait of the Leiden militia: Company of Captain Nicolaes van der Meer, 1626, by Joris van Schooten (Museum De Lakenhal, Leiden, inv. no. S-387). Unfortunately, in this militia painting only Van der Meer has been identified.
For weaponry and other military attributes, see J. B. Kist and J. P. Puype, “Wapens op schuttersstukken,” in Schutters in Holland: Kracht en zenuwen van de stad, ed. M. Carasso-Kok and J. Levy van Halm (Zwolle, 1988), 167–68.
Ronni Baer, “The Paintings of Gerrit Dou (1613–1675),” 3 vols. (Ph.D. diss., New York University, 1990), no. 45; and Ronni Baer, in Gerrit Dou 1613–1675: Master Painter in the Age of Rembrandt, ed. Arthur K. Wheelock Jr. (Exh. cat. Washington D.C., National Gallery of Art; London, Dulwich Picture Gallery; The Hague, Mauritshuis) (Washington D.C., 2000), under no. 12, 86, fig. 1.
In addition to the Portrait of a Lady in the present collection (GD-116), this device appears in works such as Painter with Pipe and Book, ca. 1645 in the Rijksmuseum; and in Dou’s Self-Portrait, ca. 1645, in a private collection in Spain.
A portrait pair by Dou from about the same time shows a similar background scheme . See: Ronni Baer, Gerrit Dou 1613-1675: Master Painter in the Age of Rembrandt, Arthur Wheelock Jr., ed. (Exh. cat. Washington D.C., National Gallery of Art; London. Dulwich Picture Gallery; The Hague, Mauritshuis) (Washington D.C., 2000), nos. 12 & 13, 86-89.
According to Amy Walsh, the pendant in Pasadena has not been examined under IRR (personal communication with the author, September 2013, correspondence kept on file, The Leiden Gallery).