We are grateful to Mr. Fred Meijer of the RKD who has suggested the attribution on the basis of a transparency; he notes that the picture 'can be attributed to Willem Grasdorp (1678-1723), as a fairly early work'. Very little is known of Grasdorp's life. He was the son of the genre and architecture painter Jan Grasdorp (1651-93), and in 1697 he studied under the Hamburg still-life painter, Ernst Stuven, before moving to Amsterdam. His strongly-lit compositions recall the oeuvre of Rachel Ruysch and Abraham Mignon. A similar still life was sold, Sotheby's, London, 3 December 1997, lot 52 (£45,500).