Youth with a lantern at night; wearing a tall wide-brimmed hat and smock coat, walking to l, carrying a lantern in his r hand and a basket in his l Pen and brown ink, with grey and brown wash, touched with white and yellow-ochre


© The Trustees of the British Museum

Department: Prints & Drawings

Registration number: Oo,9.77

Bibliographic reference
Royalton-Kisch 2010 120 (anonymous Rembrandt School)
Hind 1915-31 122
Sumowski 1979 continuing 838ax

Dutch Roy XVIIc

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Object types
drawing (scope note | all objects)

paper (all objects)
drawn (scope note | all objects)
Production person
Circle/School of Rembrandt (anonymous) (biographical details | all objects)
1645-1655 (circa)
Schools /Styles
Dutch (scope note | all objects)

Youth with a lantern and basket; wearing a tall wide-brimmed hat and smock coat, walking to left, lantern in his right hand and basket in his left. circa 1645-55

Pen and brown ink with grey, brown and yellow wash; framing lines in pen and brown ink (except down left side).

Verso: see Inscriptions.

No watermark.

Inscription Content: Inscribed verso, lower right, in red chalk, an almost illegible notation: 'No. p H [?]'.

Height: 110 millimetres (chain lines vertical, 25mm apart)
Width: 70 millimetres

Good; probably trimmed at left, to judge from framing lines.

Curator's comments
Entry from Martin Royalton-Kisch, ‘Catalogue of drawings by Rembrandt and his school’, 2010, anonymous Rembrandt School, cat. no.120.
The drawing has been associated with paintings of the 'Adoration of the Shepherds', although the youth's costume is perhaps too modern for a biblical subject.[1]
Various draughtsmen have been suggested, most recently and plausibly Barent Fabritius (1624-73). Yet the attribution of any drawings to him rests on unsatisfactory criteria, such as a general resemblance to one or more of his paintings. The present sketch may have been made by the same hand as the 'Adoration of the Shepherds' in Rotterdam (Sumowski 848x),[2] and the 'Burial of Jacob' formerly in the E. Perman collection, Stockholm (Sumowski 838x), both assigned to Barent Fabritius in the recent literature but with some reservations. The figures at the extreme left and right of the latter have rightly been compared with the British Museum's drawing,[3] and the chiaroscuro is also similar.
A general affinity in the scale of the figure and the nocturnal atmosphere with works by Rembrandt and his followers of c.1645-55 suggests a date in this period (cf., for example, cat. nos.38-39 and 103; inv. nos.1910,0212.189, 1900,0824.144 and 1860,0616.122).

[1] See Lit. below.
[2] Rotterdam, 1988, no.69 (also as Barent Fabritius).
[3] By Sumowski (see Lit. below).

Bürger, 1858, p.401 (Rembrandt; for an 'Adoration of the Shepherds?'); Blanc, II, 1861, p.454 (Rembrandt; 'effet vigoureux'); London, 1915, no.122, repr. pl.XV (probably by Rembrandt, perhaps related to a work like the 'Adoration of the Shepherds' of 1646 in the National Gallery, Br.575; reminiscent also of Eeckhout); London, 1931, p.193; Sumowski, 1979 etc., IV, 1981, no.838ax (by Barent Fabritius; compares especially 'Burial of Jacob', formerly Perman Coll., Stockholm, Sumowski 838x).

Acquisition date

Acquisition name
Bequeathed by Richard Payne Knight (biographical details | all objects)
Previous owner/ex-collection Jan Danser Nijman (The Hague, 1789) (biographical details | all objects)

Acquisition notes
Neyman, The Hague (presumably Jan Danser Nyman); according to Register, purchased from him by Payne Knight on 29 May 1789 for f.20; bequeathed by Richard Payne Knight, 1824.

Exhibition History
No exhibitions recorded.

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