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A Beggar in a High Cap, standing and leaning on a Stick

A Beggar in a High Cap, standing and leaning on a Stick
etching, circa 1629, on laid paper, without watermark, a very fine, early impression of this rare print, New Hollstein's second, final state (New Hollstein records only three impressions of the first state, with rough plate edges), printing with selectively wiped tone especially on the cloak at left, trimmed to or just within the platemark, a small stain to the left of the figure, otherwise in good condition, framed
Sheet 151 x 116 mm.
John MacGowan (d. 1803), Edinburgh; with his mark twice verso (Lugt 1496).
Nathaniel Smith (1740/41- circa 1809), London, with his initials NS, inscribed AIGX, with his inventory number D D / No 155 and the purchase price 10.6 in brown ink verso (Lugt 1988 & 2296); probably his sale, King's, London, 9 April 1804 (and following days).
Bartsch, Hollstein 162; Hind 15; New Hollstein 41

Condition report

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Lot Essay

In the years 1630-1631, before he moved to Amsterdam for the second time, Rembrandt concentrated his printmaking efforts on studies of beggars and other street characters. Unlike many of his predecessors and contemporaries Rembrandt did not stress their physical deformities or impoverished circumstances, or display the slightest sign of any amusement or censoriousness at their misfortune. Instead he showed these outcasts in a manner imbued with human understanding. In the earliest sheets these beggars are executed in a swift, sketchy way reminiscent of Jacques Callot, whose beggar series Les Gueux of 1622 seems to have been one of his sources of inspiration.

The impression in the British Museum is very similar but cleanly wiped while the present impression shows some tone which Rembrandt may have left deliberately on the beggar's rags.

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