This is an early copy of a large Van de Velde known as 'A States Yacht and many other vessels in a very light air', the earliest version of which - currently held in the National Maritime Museum's Collection (BHC 0889) - appears to date from circa 1655. M.S. Robinson discusses the various versions of the full-sized work at length in his definitive 1990 publication The Paintings of the Willem Van de Veldes where, amongst the eight paintings to which he refers, there is a small copy measuring only 12 x 17ins. which he attributes to Hendrik Dubbels. The painting being offered here appears to be another small format example, apparently unrecorded, and basically identical to Robinson 7 (see volume 1, pp. 334-5); both Robinson 7 and the version in this catalogue are essentially the same as the full-sized paintings except for a slight reduction of the composition on either edge.
The States Yacht depicted is the vessel begun for Prince Frederick Henry in 1645 but completed after his death in 1647 for his son Willem II.