Fasces, the emblem of higher Roman magistrates, signifying their authority to scourge and to behead, is also used as a symbol of unity, especially matrimonial, when it is held by Cupid.
The ornament in the Van Arkel family coat-of-arms is traditionally described as 'fasces'.
Only one other glass signed by Willem Fortuyn is known, which is in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. This glass shows a woman seated at a harpsichord and a man looking over her shoulder, after the engraving La Musique du Cabinet by Johannes Esaias Nilson (1721-1788), within a similar cartouche of rocailles and flowers as the glass here on sale. In the Rijksmuseum catalogue, there are two other glasses mentioned, which might be attributed to him on stylistic grounds: one in the former Mühsam collection, Berlin, and one with the VOC monogram in a private Dutch collection.
Neither the date of birth, the date of death, nor the domicile of Willem Fortuyn is known, but his style can be recognised by the minute strokes and pressed-in dots.
Cf. F.G.A.M. Smit, Uniquely Dutch Eighteenth-Century Stipple-Engravings on Glass, Peterborough, 1993, pp. 11-12 and Eb. 27 on p. 147 and P.C. Ritsema van Eck, Glass in the Rijksmuseum, Volume II, Zwolle, 1995, p. 419, no. 530 for the other glass signed by Fortuyn.