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3.10 Students and emulators of Rembrandt

In the following pages we must turn back to some artists whom we already met in the Schleswig-Holstein area, which was politically part of Denmark.1 It is therefore hardly surprising that we encounter the same artists at the courts of Gottorf and Copenhagen. Rembrandt’s influence became momentarily stronger, but – and this is characteristic of artists working on the periphery of the Dutch sphere of influence – they did not swear by Rembrandt alone to blindly pass by other Dutch or foreign manners. For many artists this reality explains their erratic development and amateurish mixing and imitation of all kinds of incompatible art forms. In addition, Dutch art of the borderlands lacks the kind of wide stream of production in which lesser talents can swim along and be saved from the worst excesses.

Hendrik Oldeland (1615-1656)2 was a courtier and amateur painter. He twice went on journeys to the Dutch Republic and Italy. When he was registered at the University of Leiden in 1634, he developed an urge to paint. An etching of 1650 [1640, ed.] [i] shows the influence of Rembrandt in its conception and a connection to Haarlem artists, such as Suyderhoef, in its technique. Oldeland also copied an engraving by Lucas van Leyden [i]. In Vienna there is a fetching drawn Self-Portrait of 1643 [i].

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Hendrik Oldelandt, Old man in an armchair, dated 1640

Hendrik Oldelandt
Old man in an armchair dated 1640
inkt / paper, 183 x 156 mm
Leipzig ( C.G. Boerner), 1933-11-14 - 1933-11-15, no. 577



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Hendrik Oldelandt  possibly after Jan Harmensz. Muller  after Lucas van Leyden, Portrait of emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519), dated 24 december 1642

Hendrik Oldelandt  possibly after Jan Harmensz. Muller  after Lucas van Leyden
Portrait of emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519) dated 24 december 1642
black chalk / vellum, 254 x 186 mm
Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden - Kupferstich-Kabinett, Dresden, no. C 1827



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Hendrik Oldelandt, Self portrait Hendrik Oldelandt (1615-1656), dated 1643

Hendrik Oldelandt
Self portrait Hendrik Oldelandt (1615-1656) dated 1643
paper, 136 x 109 mm
Graphische Sammlung Albertina, Vienna, no. 3535



As we have seen, Wolfgang Heimbach (1613/1616-after 1678) studied in the Netherlands and Italy. His models were Honthorst, the guardroom painters of the time, Pieter de Hooch as well as early Rembrandt compositions. In Denmark, where he worked from 1653 to 1656 and to which he returned in 1667, he painted mainly dry portraits [i] [i] and colorful genre pictures [i][i] which do not belong to the best of his work.3 He further showed himself to be a good citizen, for when the Oldenburg Land was united with Denmark in 1667 [1660, ed.], he painted a picture of the oath of allegiance, which includes a self-portrait (Rosenborg Castle) [i].4 It is not a masterpiece of perspective, especially when one considers what Jan van der Heyden or the Berckheydes achieved at the time.

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Wolfgang Heimbach, Portrait of count Christian Rantzau (1614-1663), c. 1653

Wolfgang Heimbach
Portrait of count Christian Rantzau (1614-1663) c. 1653
oil paint / panel, 26 x 20 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød, no. A 805



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Wolfgang Heimbach, Portrait of King Frederick III of Denmark (1609-1670) kneeling during the battle of Nyborg, dated 1659

Wolfgang Heimbach
Portrait of King Frederick III of Denmark (1609-1670) kneeling during the battle of Nyborg dated 1659
oil paint / panel, 25,3 x 19,6 cm
The Royal Danish Collection - Rosenborg Castle, Copenhagen, no. 7.102



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Wolfgang Heimbach, An accountant, dated 1653

Wolfgang Heimbach
An accountant dated 1653
oil paint / canvas, 43,6 x 31,2 cm
The Royal Danish Collection - Rosenborg Castle, Copenhagen, no. 7.282



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Wolfgang Heimbach, Doorcloser, dated 1654

Wolfgang Heimbach
Doorcloser dated 1654
oil paint / canvas, 99,5 x 68 cm
The Royal Danish Collection - Rosenborg Castle, Copenhagen, no. 7.285



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Wolfgang Heimbach, Paying homage to the Hereditary King in front of the Castle of Copenhagen, 18th October, 1660, dated 1666

Wolfgang Heimbach
Paying homage to the Hereditary King in front of the Castle of Copenhagen, 18th October, 1660 dated 1666
oil paint / canvas, 126,7 x 232,3 cm
The Royal Danish Collection - Rosenborg Castle, Copenhagen, no. 7.100



We observe the same mixture of Dutch guardroom painting and influences of the Rembrandt School in the small surviving oeuvre of Thomas Mathisen of Husum.5 Such guardroom pictures are found in the Copenhagen Museum [i] [i], and Fredensborg Castle has a copy, ostensibly dated 1643 , after Rembrandt’s (?) Leningrad painting, Young and old woman in front of a mirror (HdG 310) [i][i].6 In 1674 Mathisen was a member of the Bent in Rome, but nothing is known about any stay in The Dutch Republic.7 Karel van Mander probably introduced him to the Rembrandt style, which clearly shows up in another picture in Fredensborg (Old man reading, signed) [i]. This manner is a little less pronounced in The Barn (same location) [i], which is reminiscent of Hendrick Martensz. Sorgh and Cornelis Saftleven.

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Thomas Mathisen, Guardroom

Thomas Mathisen
Guardroom (1635 - 1674)
oil paint / panel, 41 x 53 cm
upper right :  Thomas M. f
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMS1538



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Thomas Mathisen, Cardplayers in courtyard, dated 1650

Thomas Mathisen
Cardplayers in courtyard dated 1650
oil paint / panel, 40 x 53,5 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSst92



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Thomas Mathisen  after follower of Ferdinand Bol, Young and old woman in front of a mirror

Thomas Mathisen  after follower of Ferdinand Bol
Young and old woman in front of a mirror (1643 - 1674)
oil paint / canvas, 124 x 95 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSst84



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  manner of/after Ferdinand Bol, Young and old woman in front of a mirror, late 1630s

  manner of/after Ferdinand Bol
Young and old woman in front of a mirror late 1630s
oil paint / panel, 41 x 31 cm
Hermitage, Saint Petersburg (Russia), no. ГЭ-783



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Thomas Mathisen, Old man reading, dated 26 February 1643

Thomas Mathisen
Old man reading dated 26 February 1643
oil paint / canvas, 118 x 99 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSst91



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Thomas Mathisen, Farm interior, dated 1643

Thomas Mathisen
Farm interior dated 1643
oil paint / canvas, 93 x 104 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSst392



Broder Matthisen (died in Husum in 1666) was until 1661 court painter and building inspector at the Gottorf court, even though he also became court painter in Berlin in 1659. He also supplied the Danish King with paintings, and a weak portrait by his hand is preserved in Frederiksborg (no. 985) [i][i].8 The still lifes in Dresden and Schwerin, of which we have spoken [in the chapter on Germany, ed.], vouch for his Dutch schooling [i][i].

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  after Broder Matthisen, Portrait of general Stefan Czarniecki (1599-1665), dated 1660

  after Broder Matthisen
Portrait of general Stefan Czarniecki (1599-1665) dated 1660
oil paint / canvas, 132 x 106 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød, no. R 61



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Broder Matthisen, Portrait of field hetman Stefan Czarniecki (1599-1665), dated 1659

Broder Matthisen
Portrait of field hetman Stefan Czarniecki (1599-1665) dated 1659
oil paint / canvas, 228 x 119 cm
Zamek Królewski w Warszawie, Warszawa, no. ZKW/3411



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Broder Matthisen, Vanitas still life with unfolded books, musical instruments, precious vessels and a globe, c. 1664

Broder Matthisen
Vanitas still life with unfolded books, musical instruments, precious vessels and a globe c. 1664
oil paint / canvas, 138 x 119 cm
left :  Mathisen fecit
Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden - Gemäldegalerie Alte Meister, Dresden, no. 1996 A



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Broder Matthisen, Still life with columbine cup, brandy bowl and fruit on a covered table, dated 1664

Broder Matthisen
Still life with columbine cup, brandy bowl and fruit on a covered table dated 1664
oil paint / canvas, 66,5 x 62,5 cm
Staatliches Museum Schwerin, Schwerin, no. 391



Bernhard Keil (1624-1687), a Rembrandt student from Helsingør, never became of importance for Denmark, as he ended his life as a good Catholic in Rome, before which he had spent for eight years as one of Rembrandt’s students in Amsterdam. He was introduced to the fundaments of Dutch art by Morten van Steenwinckel in Copenhagen, but his stay in Italy appears to have wiped out all traces of Dutch schooling, so that Italian scholarship now gives the only surviving picture in Denmark, Evening visit to a sculptor, to an unknown Caravaggio follower [i].9

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  attributed to Adam de Coster, Two sculptors at night : François Du Quesnoy (1597-1643) and Georg Petel (1601/1602-1633/1634), c. 1622

  attributed to Adam de Coster
Two sculptors at night : François Du Quesnoy (1597-1643) and Georg Petel (1601/1602-1633/1634) c. 1622
oil paint / canvas, 114 x 95 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp810



Heinrich Jansen (1625-1667), who came from Flensburg, was a Rembrandt student for three years (from 1654 to 1658) and visited the Dutch Republic once more when he undertook a great journey to Spain and Italy. From 1657 to 1661 he was court painter to Frederick III in Copenhagen. He spent the rest of his life in Flensburg.10 He repeatedly copied pictures by Rembrandt, especially his early works, such as the Christ in the Garden and the Presentation in the Temple, both in Copenhagen [i][i].11 A signed drawing of The Healing of Tobias, discovered by K.E. Simon, has ended up in the Copenhagen print cabinet [i]. It is more reminiscent of Bramer, Moeyaert and contemporary mannerists than of any early work by Rembrandt.

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Heinrich Jansen  afterRembrandt, The risen Christ appearing to Mary Magdalene, c. 1645-1649

Heinrich Jansen  afterRembrandt
The risen Christ appearing to Mary Magdalene c. 1645-1649
oil paint / panel, 61 x 52 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMS1523



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Heinrich Jansen, Presentation in the temple, dated 1649

Heinrich Jansen
Presentation in the temple dated 1649
oil paint / canvas, 63 x 53 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMS1524



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Heinrich Jansen, Tobias healing his father (Tobit 11: 13-15), 1654-1667

Heinrich Jansen
Tobias healing his father (Tobit 11: 13-15) 1654-1667
charcoal / paper, 230 x 221 mm
SMK - The Royal Collection of Graphic Art, Copenhagen, no. Td 507, nr. 1c recto



We have already spoken in detail about Jürgen Ovens (1623-1678).12 He was likewise a Rembrandt student in the forties, but his nimble nature looked to Flemish inspiration for his portraits and biblical compositions. He played a significant role in Gottorf. He also accompanied Princes Hedvig Eleonora as her court painter to her wedding in Stockholm [i].

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Jürgen Ovens, The marriage of Princess Hedwig Eleonore of Gottorf with King Charles X Gustav of Sweden on October 24th 1654, c. 1654-1655

Jürgen Ovens
The marriage of Princess Hedwig Eleonore of Gottorf with King Charles X Gustav of Sweden on October 24th 1654 c. 1654-1655
oil paint / canvas, 212 x 306 cm
Nationalmuseum Stockholm, Stockholm, no. NM 908



In the 1650s, while Frederick III lingered in Flensburg, Ovens painted some scenes from Danish history for the Copenhagen court, which are today preserved in Christiansborg Castle in Copenhagen [i],13

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Jürgen Ovens, King Christian I of Denmark receives in 1474 at Rothenburg ob der Tauber from the German Emperor Friedrich III the elevation of the county Holstein to a duchy and the investiture with Dithmarschen, dated 1665

Jürgen Ovens
King Christian I of Denmark receives in 1474 at Rothenburg ob der Tauber from the German Emperor Friedrich III the elevation of the county Holstein to a duchy and the investiture with Dithmarschen dated 1665
oil paint / canvas, 300 x 357 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød



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Jürgen Ovens, King Christian I of Denmark receives in 1474 from pope Sixtus IV the Golden Rose, dated 1665

Jürgen Ovens
King Christian I of Denmark receives in 1474 from pope Sixtus IV the Golden Rose dated 1665
oil paint / canvas, 260 x 300 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød



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Jürgen Ovens, Copenhagen chooses in 1524 King Frederick I, c. 1663-1665

Jürgen Ovens
Copenhagen chooses in 1524 King Frederick I c. 1663-1665
oil paint / canvas, 292 x 263 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød



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Jürgen Ovens, Duke John Adolf of Gottorf marries in 1598 Augusta, the sister of King Christian IV of Denmark, c. 1663-1665

Jürgen Ovens
Duke John Adolf of Gottorf marries in 1598 Augusta, the sister of King Christian IV of Denmark c. 1663-1665
oil paint / canvas, 300 x 465 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød



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Jürgen Ovens, The city of Hamburg honours King Christian IV of Denmark and duke John Adolf of Gottorf, c. 1663-1665

Jürgen Ovens
The city of Hamburg honours King Christian IV of Denmark and duke John Adolf of Gottorf c. 1663-1665
oil paint / canvas, 301 x 159 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød, no. 1080 (cat. 1919)



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Jürgen Ovens, Duke Adolf of Gottorf receives in 1568 of Queen Elisabeth of England the Order of the Garter, c. 1663-1665

Jürgen Ovens
Duke Adolf of Gottorf receives in 1568 of Queen Elisabeth of England the Order of the Garter c. 1663-1665
oil paint / canvas, 298 x 159 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød, no. 1074 (cat. 1919)



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Jürgen Ovens, Duke Adolf of Gottorf encounters a lion at the english court in 1568, c. 1663-1665

Jürgen Ovens
Duke Adolf of Gottorf encounters a lion at the english court in 1568 c. 1663-1665
oil paint / canvas, 297 x 170 cm
Reichsadvokatur (Kopenhagen), Copenhagen



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Jürgen Ovens, The tomb of count Dietrich the fortunate of Oldenburg with a family tree of the dukes of Gottorf, c. 1663-1665

Jürgen Ovens
The tomb of count Dietrich the fortunate of Oldenburg with a family tree of the dukes of Gottorf c. 1663-1665
oil paint / canvas, 300 x 154 cm
The National Museum of History Frederiksborg Castle, Hillerød, no. 1075 (cat. 1919)



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Jürgen Ovens, Duke Adolf VIII of Schauenburg renounces the crown and introduces his nephew Christian of Oldenburg as the successor of Christopher of Denmark, c. 1663-1665

Jürgen Ovens
Duke Adolf VIII of Schauenburg renounces the crown and introduces his nephew Christian of Oldenburg as the successor of Christopher of Denmark c. 1663-1665
oil paint / canvas, 121 x 203 cm
Sønderborg Slot, Sønderborg



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Jürgen Ovens, Allegory on the fortunate rule of Christian I of Denmark, c. 1663-1665

Jürgen Ovens
Allegory on the fortunate rule of Christian I of Denmark c. 1663-1665
oil paint / canvas, 144 x 209 cm
Museet på Koldinghus, Kolding (Denmark), no. 9173



and, predictably, several portraits.14 The pictures of this time are good examples of his Rembrandtesque manner. His student, Magnus Jørgensen (active 1683-1719), who hailed from Randers, painted several allegories (Fredensborg, Randers, Lund) in which one can still discern a little of Ovens’ teaching [i][i][i].

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Magnus Jørgensen, Vanitas with Minerva, dated 1709

Magnus Jørgensen
Vanitas with Minerva dated 1709
oil paint / canvas, 171 x 139 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSst462



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Magnus Jørgensen, An old man in an interior holding a printed sermon, dated 1709

Magnus Jørgensen
An old man in an interior holding a printed sermon dated 1709
oil paint / canvas, 79 x 76 cm
Randers Kunstmuseum, Randers, no. 0074



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Magnus Jørgensen, Peasant meal, dated 1701

Magnus Jørgensen
Peasant meal dated 1701
oil paint / canvas, 162 x 131 cm
Kulturhistoriska föreningen för södra Sverige, Lund (Sweden), no. KM 14554



Horatius Paulijn (c. 1644-in or after 1682) intended to go on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land with Jan Rote, but the journey came to a premature end in Hamburg. Paulijn appears to have worked in, or at least for, Denmark, as is indicated by a portrait of Sophie Amalia Moth [i].15 We repeatedly encounter paintings by Paulijn in Danish auction catalogues and old collections, but secure attributions remain rarities even today (collection Belgioso, Milan) [i].16

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Horatius Paulijn, Portrait of Sophia Amalia Moth (1654 - 1719), mistress of King Christian V of Denmark, dated 1682

Horatius Paulijn
Portrait of Sophia Amalia Moth (1654 - 1719), mistress of King Christian V of Denmark dated 1682
oil paint / canvas, 46 x 51 cm
upper right :  Horatius Paulii
left :  Pinxit 1682
Gisselfeld Kloster, Haslev, no. 50 (cat. 1918)



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Horatius Paulijn, Lute player in an interior, c. 1670-1680

Horatius Paulijn
Lute player in an interior c. 1670-1680
oil paint / canvas, 52 x 40 cm
Castello Sforzesco, Milan, no. 1318



Abraham van der Hecken also had Danish clients. In 1653 Joachim Beck, who came from ‘Güstrow in the realm of Denmark’, had himself portrayed by Van der Hecken, and that in two versions, once simple and unexceptional and the second with accessories and frame for 168 Rijcxdaelders [420 guilders].17



[1]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] The RKD plans to start work on the German chapter in the course of 2015.

[2]

[Gerson 1942/1983] Thorlacius-Ussing 1934.

[3]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] On Heimbach, see Schlüter-Göttsche 1966 and Morsbach 1999.

[4]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] Heimbach painted it six years later, in 1666.

[5]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] Thieme/Becker 1907-1950, vol. 24 (1930), p. 264. If the artist who signed as ‘Thomas Matthiae’ or ‘Thomas Mathisen’ is the same person as the ‘F. Matheus from there [the society of Dutch and Flemish artists in Rome] named the Pious painter of Antwerp’ (F. Matheus van daar [de Schildersbent] genaamt de Vrome schilder van Antwerpen) (identification by Von Wurzbach 1906-1911, taken over by all other authors), then he did not come from Husum but from Antwerp. Even if this identification is incorrect, there is still little reason to assume that the artist came from Husum.

[6]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] The date of 1643 on this work was erroneously mentioned by Wurzbach and Thieme/Becker. However, according to the collection catalogues of the Statens Museum (1946, 1951 and an online version of 2014), it is not this painting that is dated 1643, but the Scholar in his study  which was traditionally thought to be the pendant. This explains why Gerson was not able to locate the date upon inspection (see note xxx).

[7]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] The assumption that Thomas Mathisen is the same as ‘The Pious’ Bentvueghel F. Matheus is not convincing (see note xxx [114]). Mathisen’s Rembrandtesque paintings are related to Ferdinand Bol, whose work he must have known well. This speaks for an Amsterdam stay around 1640.

[8]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] A better version, in full length, is found in the Royal Castle in Warsaw (RKDimages 232394).

[9]

[Gerson 1942/1983] Gerson 1942/1983, pp. 160-161. [Van Leeuwen 2015] Gerson based himself on Longhi, who attributed the work to a Flemish Caravaggist of c. 1615-1630 (Longhi 1936). Nicolson first attributed the work to Adam de Coster, as a portrait of two art dealers or artists (Nicolson 1961). In the later literature it is always advanced as a portrait of the sculptors François Du Quesnoy (1597-1643) and Georg Petel (1601/2-1634).

[10]

[Gerson 1942/1983] Madsen 1914A.

[11]

[Gerson 1942/1983] I saw only the Christ as Gardner in Frederiksborg. It is an unsigned copy after Rembrandt. Nor could I locate a signature on the above-mentioned Rembrandt copy by Mathisen (see note 116, ed.).[Van Leeuwen 2015] The signature ‘Heinrich Jansen von Holstein inven: & fecit/: 1649’ (facsimile in Madsen 1914A) is not found on the Noli me tangere but on the Presentation in the Temple , which is not a copy of Rembrandt but a work in his manner done in Flensburg after Jansen’s Amsterdam apprenticeship with Rembrandt..

[12]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] Gerson 1942/1983, passim (especially in the chapter on Germany). The RKD is planning to start work on the German chapter in 2015.

[13]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] The decorations were transferred to Frederiksborg around 1880. One piece subsequently (?) ended up in Sønderborg Castle (RKD images 242684). RKDimages 242836 is located in Museet på Koldinghus, Kolding and, given the deviating provenance, probably does not belong to the series.

[14]

[Gerson 1942/1983] Schmidt 1922 , pp. 163-168. [Van Leeuwen 2015] Sumowski 1983-1994, vol. 3, pp. 2218-2306; Drees 1997. We have not been able to locate any portraits done at the Danish court during this period.

[15]

[Van Leeuwen 2015] Sophie Amalie Moth (1654-1719), official mistress of King Christian V, was granted estates in Gottorp in 1682.

[16]

[Gerson 1942/1983] Falck 1917.

[17]

[Gerson 1942/1983] Bredius 1915-1921, vol. 7. p. 102.

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