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7.2 Morell’s acquisitions in 1755-1759

The first surviving invoice of Morell, dating from 1755, concerns a few expensive still lifes by Melchior d‘Hondecoeter (300 rd.), Joris van Son (300 rd.), Dirk Valkenburg (400 rd.) and Frans Snijders (200 rd.), a naval battle by Ludolf Bakhuizen (800 rd.) and a battle piece by Jan van Huchtenburg (300 rd.), to which were added affordable landscapes by Nicolaes Molenaer (30 rd.), Jacob van Ruisdael (90 rd. each), Philipp Peter Roos (50 rd. each).1 Of these works a Four Day Sea Battle between England and The Netherlands (1666 according to the acquisition list of 1674) [i], a Poultry at a country seat by Hondecoeter, a Flower and fruit wreath by Joris van Son (300 rd.) [i][i] as well as a (northern) Landscape with waterfall by Ruisdael [i] can still be traced to the Copenhagen collection even today.2

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Ludolf Bakhuizen, Battle of Texel, 21 August 1673, after 1673

Ludolf Bakhuizen
Battle of Texel, 21 August 1673 after 1673
oil paint / canvas, 141,5 x 234,5 cm
lower right :  L. Back.
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp543



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Melchior d' Hondecoeter, A common crane, peacock, chickens and ducks in a formal garden

Melchior d' Hondecoeter
A common crane, peacock, chickens and ducks in a formal garden (1654 - 1695)
oil paint / canvas, 154,3 x 183,5 cm
center :  M.d'Hondecoeter
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp583



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Joris van Son, Flowers and fruits around a niche, dated 166[.]

Joris van Son
Flowers and fruits around a niche dated 166[.]
oil paint / canvas, 166,5 x 120,3 cm
lower center :  J. van. son. f166[.]
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp290



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Joris van Son, Flowers and fruits around a niche, dated 1665

Joris van Son
Flowers and fruits around a niche dated 1665
oil paint / canvas, 170 x 121 cm
bottom left of the middle :  J. van. son. f1665
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp289



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Jacob van Ruisdael, Nordic mountain landscape with waterfall and cottage, first half of the 1660s

Jacob van Ruisdael
Nordic mountain landscape with waterfall and cottage first half of the 1660s
oil paint / canvas, 140,2 x 118 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp570



An interesting aspect of this sale is that Morell clearly operated in the top price bracket. That was not to change until he entered Danish royal service. Accordingly, Johann Salomon Wahl had to pay an additional 1,855 rd. for the pictures purchased by Morell on 17 December 1756 (1755 3,000 for 19 pictures), even though the works concerned were not spectacular ones.3 Thus, a Landscape with sheep by Simon van der Does (125 rd.) [i] and a Sea Battle by Johannes Lingelbach (150 rd.) [i] , as well as landscapes by Jan Wijnants (120 rd.) [i] and Herman van Swanevelt (75 rd.) [i], were relatively expensive. A landscape by Alexander Keirincx (120 rd.) [i] is still another case in point.4

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Jacob van der  Does (I), Landscape with a shepheard and his flock, dated 1661

Jacob van der  Does (I)
Landscape with a shepheard and his flock dated 1661
oil paint / canvas, 72,5 x 83,5 cm
lower right : 
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp518



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Johannes Lingelbach, Naval battle off the coast

Johannes Lingelbach
Naval battle off the coast (1637 - 1674)
oil paint / canvas, 111 x 145,5 cm
lower right :  J. LINGELBAC.
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp755



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Jan Wijnants, Winterlandscape

Jan Wijnants
Winterlandscape (1650 - 1683)
oil paint / canvas, 65,3 x 80,6 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp388



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  attributed to Herman van Swanevelt, Diana and her Nymphs resting near a mountain lake

  attributed to Herman van Swanevelt
Diana and her Nymphs resting near a mountain lake (1624 - 1685)
oil paint / canvas, 140,5 x 182,5 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMS sp 488



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Alexander Keirincx, A wooded landscape with a road a a drinking dear, dated 1630

Alexander Keirincx
A wooded landscape with a road a a drinking dear dated 1630
oil paint / panel, 89,5 x 122 cm
lower left :  A. Keirincx fec A° 1630
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp375



Significantly broader and of better value are the acquisitions Morell made directly for the king in 1759.5 These purchases were connected to plans to erect a new gallery, and Morell’s comments offer a guarded indication of where he must have done his buying: namely in Amsterdam, at an auction of 17 April 1759, when, according to information supplied by a friend of his, the cabinet of the deceased Baroness van Lockhorst was to be sold. Presumably at issue here was the estate of Johanna Maria Witheijn (1686-1758), widow of Vincent Maximiliaan van Lockhorst, Lord of Ter Meer, Maarssen and Schonauwen (1665-1740) [i], even though this is not mentioned in the surviving auction catalogue of the De Leth firm for that day.6

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Jan Maurits Quinkhard, Portrait of Vincent Maximiliaan Baron van Lockhorst (1665-1740), dated 1740

Jan Maurits Quinkhard
Portrait of Vincent Maximiliaan Baron van Lockhorst (1665-1740) dated 1740
oil paint / canvas, 49 x 41 cm
lower right :  J M Quinkhard p[...] / 17[...]
M.A.O.C. Gravin van Bylandt Stichting, The Hague



What did Morell purchase at the auction of 17 April 1759?7 He is only expressly mentioned as buyer on three occasions: in connection with a landscape by ‘Rainier van Brill’ (no.. 80 for 15 fl.) as well as, in an appendix to the auction (18 April 1759), with two landscapes by Albert Meijeringh (no. 14, together 16 fl.) [i] and a large kitchen piece by Jordaens and Snijders (no. 2, 20 fl.). The latter work crops up as number eight on the acquisition list for 1759. The other acquisitions that have been associated with Morell do not occur under his name on the list, although, as in other cases, Morell could have arrived at different attributions, so that a painting by Poussin or Salvator Rosa could go hidden behind landscape numbers six and seven of the list (see below).

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Albert Meyering, Arcadian landscape, dated 1696

Albert Meyering
Arcadian landscape dated 1696
oil paint / canvas, 112 x 149 cm
lower right :  A. Meijeringh.fecit. Aº 1696
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp626



Upon closer examination of the auction catalogue, we notice further astonishing correspondences to Morell’s acquisitions of 1759, although either other or no buyers are mentioned in connection with the works in question. It starts with Jan Both’s Italian Landscape (no. 17) [i], which according to the notation in the auction catalogue went to art dealer De Winter for 385 fl., and for which (assuming it is the same work) Morell billed the King 326 rd. Morell probably bought the work after the De Winter auction. Apart from that, hand-written notes about buyers at auctions are not always correct. The Coral Manufacture purchased by Morell is almost certainly identical to no. 30 (130 fl.) of the auction, except that Van Loo is specified as the artist, whereas Morell presented the work to the King as a Caravaggio [i]. Other works at the auction which could correspond to items on Morell’s acquisition list on account of their subject matter, are Anthonie Beerstraten’s Winter landscape (no. 107, 25 fl.) [i] and Jacob van der Does’ Landscape with sheep (no. 23) (see above). Astonishing, however, is the high price of 100 fl. that the latter picture fetched at the auction when compared to Morell’s specification of 20 rd. However, The Storm by Bakhuizen (no. 106) [i] and a landscape by Jan Hackaert (no. 67) [i] may well have come from the Lockhorst auction. Much the same may be true for the pendant portraits, for which Morell identifies Michiel van Mierevelt whereas the Catalogue speaks off ‘manner of Slingeland’ [i][i]. At 20 fl. 10, the price remains within the frame of Morellian norms of conversion. The ‘church interior’ Morell attributes to Hendrick van Steenwijck could correspond to the Emanuel de Witte (no. 24, 60 fl.).

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Zacharias  Webber (II), Allegory on Apollo as patron of the arts and artists, dated 1672

Zacharias  Webber (II)
Allegory on Apollo as patron of the arts and artists dated 1672
oil paint / canvas, 191 x 163 cm
center :  Z:Webber Fecit 1672
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen



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Jacob van Loo, The Italian glass and coral factory in Amsterdam (?)

Jacob van Loo
The Italian glass and coral factory in Amsterdam (?) (1629 - 1670)
oil paint / canvas, 163 x 215 cm
lower left : 
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp291



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Anthonie Beerstraaten, Winter scene with the Luttekepoort of Harderwijk, dated 1664

Anthonie Beerstraaten
Winter scene with the Luttekepoort of Harderwijk dated 1664
oil paint / canvas, 93 x 129 cm
lower left :  ABeerstraaten 1664
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp492



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Ludolf Bakhuizen, Ships at sea in a storm

Ludolf Bakhuizen
Ships at sea in a storm (1646 - 1708)
oil paint / canvas, 72 x 92 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp544



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Jan Hackaert  and Johannes Lingelbach, Italianate riverlandscape with traveling people on a road

Jan Hackaert  and Johannes Lingelbach
Italianate riverlandscape with traveling people on a road (1643 - 1674)
oil paint / canvas, 168 x 242 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMS sp 580



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  attributed to Michiel van Mierevelt  or attributed to Nicolaes Eliasz. Pickenoy, Portrait of a man, dated 1621

  attributed to Michiel van Mierevelt  or attributed to Nicolaes Eliasz. Pickenoy
Portrait of a man dated 1621
oil paint / panel, 122 x 88 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp347



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  attributed to Michiel van Mierevelt  or attributed to Nicolaes Eliasz. Pickenoy, Portrait of a woman, dated 1621

  attributed to Michiel van Mierevelt  or attributed to Nicolaes Eliasz. Pickenoy
Portrait of a woman dated 1621
oil paint / panel, 122 x 87,5 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp348



Given the current state of research, we are not able to identify a specific auction or collection for other important 1759 acquisitions by Morel, such as the still lifes by Frans Snijders [i] and Adriaen van Utrecht [i]. With Rubens‘ Christ on the Cross (now deemed to be a work from the artist’s workshop) [i], which at 150 rtl is one of the more expensive paintings on the acquisitions list, we only know that a painting of this kind was sold on 23 May 1758 as part of the estate of the artist and collector Petrus Johannes Snijers (1696-1757).8 Morell must have bought it either at this auction or shortly thereafter. For a long time the most important acquisition of 1759 was thought to be Rembrandt’s Christ at Emmaus [i]. It is now believed to be a ‘satellite’ picture, being an independent painting by a student working in Rembrandt’s workshop – with reference to a ‘prototype’ (now in the Louvre) by the master.9 At 75 rd., it was purchased for the Danish King for a relatively modest price. Its provenance was long wrapped in obscurity. Nevertheless this picture appears as number 7 in a catalogue, preserved in Paris, of an Amsterdam auction (de Leth) of 5 July 1759. According to a handwritten entry it went for 115 fl. to a merchant named De Weede, from whom Morell must have bought it.10

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Frans Snijders  or studio of Frans Snijders, Still life with fruit on a table, first half of the 1620s

Frans Snijders  or studio of Frans Snijders
Still life with fruit on a table first half of the 1620s
oil paint / canvas, 118,5 x 177,5 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp209



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Adriaen van Utrecht, Fruit still life with birds and a squirrel, dated 1647

Adriaen van Utrecht
Fruit still life with birds and a squirrel dated 1647
oil paint / canvas, 114,6 x 171,5 cm
upper left :  A driaen van utrecht / fe' an° 1647
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp250



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  attributed to Peter Paul Rubens  or studio of Peter Paul Rubens  and manner of Joos de  Momper (II), Christ on the Cross, 1592-1633

  attributed to Peter Paul Rubens  or studio of Peter Paul Rubens  and manner of Joos de  Momper (II)
Christ on the Cross 1592-1633
oil paint / panel, 105,5 x 74 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp186



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  studio ofRembrandt, The supper at Emmaus, 1648

  studio ofRembrandt
The supper at Emmaus 1648
oil paint / canvas, 89,5 x 111,5 cm
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen, no. KMSsp405





[1]

Ihro Königl. Majestet der König haben d. 31. Ocber 1755 von den H. Morel folgende Mahlerey auf die Königl. Kunstskammer gekauft; Ihro Königl. Majestet haben den 31. Ocber 1755 allergnädigst geliebet folgende Mahlereyen auf die Königl.  Kunstkammer zu geben (Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen). The total of the individual prices had amouned to 3,570 rd. However, they agreed with Morell on the total amount of 3,000 rd.

[2]

On Joris van Son, see Koester 2000, pp. 238-240. The RKD sticks to the traditional title The Battle of Texel, 21 August 1673, following the auction catalogue of 16 September 1739 and later collection catalogues of the Statens Museum for Kunst (see RKDimages 33844)

[3]

Specification der schilderyen welge von Ihro Königl. Majestet dem Könige auf dero Kunst-kammer von Mons Morel den 20. Decbr. 1756 gekauft (Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen).

[4]

Koester 2000, p. 150: ‘one of the most important of Keirincx’s landscapes from the years around 1630, the most characteristic period of his career’. ‘Rd.’ refers to rix-dollars, ‘fl.’ to florins’ and ‘st.’ to stuivers.

[5]

Verzeichniß der Mahlereyen welche an des benannte Ao 1759 vor Rechnung Ih. K. Maj. erkauft und anno 1760 Mese Febr. auf der Kunstkammer geliefert (Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen).

[6]

I thank Marten Jan Bok (Amsterdam) for this reference.

[7]

Lugt no. 1046, auction Amsterdam (De Leth) 17-18 April 1759.

[8]

Koester 2000, pp. 204-205. Lugt no. 1008, auction Antwerp 23 May 1758: P.J. Snyers.

[9]

According to Van de Wetering 2006; see RKDimages 52817.

[10]

Lugt no. 1058, auction Amsterdam (De Leth) 5 July 1759.

Datum laatste wijziging: Apr 21, 2015 10:26 AM