Young man seated on a window-sill; his head resting in his l hand, a wide-brimmed hat on his knee Pen and brown ink and grey and red-brown wash


© The Trustees of the British Museum

Department: Prints & Drawings

Registration number: Oo,9.68

Bibliographic reference
Hind 1915-31 154
Royalton-Kisch 2010 Dijck.1

Dutch Roy XVIIc

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Object types
drawing (scope note | all objects)

paper (all objects)
drawn (scope note | all objects)
Production person
Attributed to Abraham van Dijck (biographical details | all objects)
Formerly attributed to Rembrandt (School of) (biographical details | all objects)
1655 (circa)
Schools /Styles
Dutch (scope note | all objects)

A youth seated in a window; his head resting in his left hand, a wide-brimmed hat on his knee. c.1655?

Pen and brown ink with rust-brown wash and grey wash.

Verso: see inscriptions.

No watermark.

Inscription Content: Inscribed on verso, an indistinct graphite inscription, upper centre.

Height: 227 millimetres (chain lines vertical, 24mm apart)
Width: 160 millimetres

Trimmed and rubbed in places; lower corners worn and repaired.

Curator's comments
Entry from Martin Royalton-Kisch, 'Catalogue of drawings by Rembrandt and his school', 2010, attributed to Abraham van Dijck, cat. no.1:

Although the drawing was celebrated in the nineteenth century as a particularly fine work by Rembrandt, it lies stylistically close to some of his pupils. As has previously been noticed, the broad use of the wash is suggestive of van den Eeckhout,[1] whose drawing of a 'Seated Youth' (now in the Thaw Collection, New York), is similarly posed.[2] Yet the penwork seems closer to other Rembrandt pupils, including Philips Koninck (especially in the foreground description of the area around the window embrasure)[3] and, above all, Abraham van Dijck. The latter's 'Old Woman with a Bible' (Pierpont Morgan Library, New York) is particularly close in the delineation of the hands, with their round-ended fingers and nails, and his signed 'Young Woman' (Kunsthalle, Bremen) is comparable in the mincing penwork in the face, with the short parallel strokes near the eyes, and in the broad wash in the drapery. There are also analogies with the style of the 'Young Woman seated on the Floor' now in Munich, the attribution of which is, however, less secure.[4] For these reasons, the British Museum drawing is here tentatively attributed to Abraham van Dijck. The Rembrandtesque qualities suggest a date in the 1650s, although Abraham van Dyck's stylistic development has yet to be clearly established.
The figure appears to be sitting in the ruins of a medieval building.

[1] See Lit. below (London, 1915; Exh. New York-Paris, 1977-8).
[2] Sumowski 782x, sold Christie's, New York, 12 January, 1995, lot 253, repr.
[3] See the 'Wide River Landscape with a Mountain in the Background', now in Rotterdam (Sumowski 1490x; Rotterdam, 1988, no.93).
[4] The Pierpont Morgan Library drawing is Sumowski 571, that in Bremen, Sumowski 572, and the Munich sheet Sumowski 586xx.

Josi, 1821, p.22, with facsimile (major work by Rembrandt); Bürger, 1858, p.398 (by Rembrandt); Blanc, II, 1861, pp.454-5 (Rembrandt); Vosmaer, 1868, p.484 (Rembrandt, c.1652-4, apparently of Titus; gives wrong provenance); Vosmaer, 1877, p.602 (Rembrandt); Havard, I, 1879, p.83 (Rembrandt); Dutuit, IV, 1885, p.86 (by Rembrandt, thought to be of Titus); London, 1915, no.154, repr. pl.XXII (suggestive of Eeckhout); Exh. New York-Paris, 1977-8, p.55, under no.35, note 20 (presumably Eeckhout); Exh. London, 1992, pp.11-12, repr. fig.iii (school of Rembrandt; attributional history).

Josi entitled the drawing 'le Jeune Paresseux'.

Associated names
Portrait of Titus van Rijn (?) (biographical details | all objects)

Acquisition date

Acquisition name
Bequeathed by Richard Payne Knight (biographical details | all objects)

Acquisition notes
Possibly Nicolaas van Bremen sale, Amsterdam, 15 etc., December, 1766, lot 227: 'Een Man zittende in het Venster, met zijn Linkerhand onder zyn Kin; rustende met zijn Elleboog op zyn Knien, zeer fraay met de Pen en Oost Indisch Inkt gewassen, door Rembrandt'; bequeathed by Richard Payne Knight, 1824 (as Rembrandt).

Exhibition History
1992, BM, Drawings by Rembrandt and his Circle (not in catalogue, as School of Rembrandt).

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