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    Sale 7570

    Old Master, Modern and Contemporary Prints

    2 April 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 80

    Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn

    The Great Jewish Bride (B., Holl. 340; H. 127)

    Price Realised  


    Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn
    The Great Jewish Bride (B., Holl. 340; H. 127)
    etching with drypoint and engraving, 1635, fifth, final state, a fine impression, with narrow margins, a tiny paper loss at the lower left sheet corner, a few pale foxmarks in the blank areas at the sheet edges, some minor skinning and staining at the sheet corners on the reverse, generally in very good condition, framed
    P. 220 x 167 mm., S. 225 x 170 mm.

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    Despite its title and elaborate fantastical costume this print can be counted as one of Rembrandt's most descriptive portraits of his first wife Saskia Uylenburgh (1612-42), whom he had married in the previous year. He seems to have begun the plate working informally from life, and then took the plate through five states, adding and strengthening shading in the background, the hair and the sleeves of her dress - showing the lengths to which he would go to achieve the desired result. The title is an 18th century one, whereas it is more probable that the subject is Minerva, a Sibyl, or as has been suggested more recently, Esther. Whatever the truth, the model is almost certainly Saskia, and the print one of Rembrandt's most desirable.

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