The word 'School' in the title is used in its loose sense (as it was by A.M. Hind in his 1915 catalogue of the same material) and does not suggest that all the artists included were pupils of Rembrandt himself. This is mentioned as it was taken wrongly by at least one Dutch reviewer of Sumowski's Drawings of the Rembrandt School, 1979 etc.
The drawings by Rembrandt are arranged chronologically with the exception of the landscapes (nos 62-70) and with a few minor deviations in order to group certain works together. Some attributions to him are accepted only with reservations, as is discussed in each entry. Drawings have been rejected from Rembrandt's oeuvre when insufficient evidence exists (among the material that is attributed to him with confidence) to retain them under his name. Such judgments are never definitive and frequently debated.
Measurements are in millimetres, height before width. They are followed by a number in brackets that records the pattern formed by the parallel chain lines in the laid paper. Thus '(25v)' means that the chain lines are 25mm apart and run vertically through the paper, as seen from the recto; similarly '(25h)' means that they run horizontally across the paper.
References to earlier literature are abbreviated from those given in the Bibliography. Exhibitions recorded as having taken place in London were held at the British Museum unless otherwise stated. Full references to exhibition catalogues will be found under 'E' for Exhibitions in the Bibliography.
Watermarks are described and reproduced wherever practicable, using equipment kindly donated to the British Museum by the Josefowitz family.
Dates are often approximate and a question mark could be taken as read in many cases. The dates suggested rely closely on the few drawings that it is possible to assign to a particular year.
In the literature sections, where two editions are quoted (Benesch, 1954 and 1973, for example) the references are given only under the first (in this case as Benesch, 1954/73). Where a later edition only has been consulted it is expressed as, for example, Haak, 1976/74.
The bibliographies are not exhaustive, and the recent explosion of publications in the field will mean there are some omissions, which I regret. But by including as much literature as possible it is hoped that it will be clear where the consensus of opinion lies regarding each drawing.