Local Heart, Global Soul

April 1, 2019

The Old Master Detail Continues….

There are more paintings in the Mauritshuis that catch my eye and make me look closely at the detail that they exhibit. Some names like Hans Holbein I are well known, but others like Bartholomäus Bruyn I and Jan Mostaert are less known.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Bartholomäus Bruyn I (1493-1555) “Portrait of Elizabeth Bellinghausen (1520-after 1570) Painted 1538-39.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The first glace at this painting was confusing: we have a man who its in chains at a table laden with bread and drinks… what on earth could be going on here? Then I read the caption on the information board, which explains that this a painting illustrating one of the Bible’s most well known Old Testament stories: That of Pharaoh and Joseph and his technicolor coat. The Pharaoh has repeditive disturbing dreams that he can’t explain, but Joseph can…

Jan Mostaert (1475-1555/6)  “Joseph Explaining the dreams of the Baker and the Cupbearer” (painted circa 1500)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Hans Holbein II (1497/98- 15430) “Portrait of a Nobleman with a Falcon” painted 1542.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Hans Holbein II (1497/98- 15430) “Portrait of Robert Cheseman (1485-1547)” painted 1533.

“The Latin inscription tells us the identity of this nobleman: Robert Cheseman, 48 yeas old in 1533. Cheseman was the chief falconer to the English King Henry VIII, an honourabl position. He is stroking the bird on his hand with a tender gesture. The Garman painter Hans Holbein painted this masterpiece shortly after he settled for good in England. His amazing painting technique I shown to great advantage in the man’s intent gaze, the shiny satin of his sleeves and in the little brass bell.”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Hans Holbein II (1497/98- 15430) “Portrait of Jane Seymour (1509?-1537)” painted 1540.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

September 18, 2009

The Hague: So just Who is Jantje ?

Jantje (Small)

(photo © kiwidutch)

“In Den Haag daar woont een graaf” is a very well known Dutch Nursery Rhyme the subject of which, some say is Jan I, (John I) the son of Count Floris V who was the Graafschap Holland (Count of the County of Holland between 1256 and 1296)

After Count Floris V was assassinated in 1296, his son Jan ( Jantje is an informal name for Jan) is said to have succeeded him to become the 13th Count of Holland. The boy was only 13 years old when this took place and after two years the pressure was too much and the title and country was handed over to his cousin John II. John took office in January, and in the same month that Jan apparently died.

It’s not known for certain if Jan I was indeed the specific person meant in the song, it may just be as simple as the fact that “Jan” in those days was very common Dutch name and that it conveniently rhymes with the dutch words for “basket” and “hand”, words also featured in the song.

Because The Hague was originally created as the Residence for the Count, this statue was commissioned by the Hague City Council to commerate the Hague’s 750th Anniversary as a City, and was sculpted in 1976 by artist Ivo Coljé .

It stands of the banks of the Lange Vijverberg ( the water that partly surrounds the Dutch Parliament, the Binnehof) and depicts a small boy in a hat with a tall plume and holding a basket pointing directly at the Parliament buildings (and by co-insidence or not) almost directly at the Prime Minister’s Office.

Although the author of the rhyme is unknown, the rhyme appears in literature as early as 1871, in a book called “Nederlandse Baker – en kinderrijmen”” (Dutch Nursery Rhymes) by J. van Vloten.

Officially, the function of Count disappeared with the abolition of the seigneurial rights in 1794 when the French invaded the area to “liberate” governor William V of Orange-Nassau.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

The text in Dutch reads:

In Den Haag daar woont een graaf
En zijn zoon heet Jantje.
Als je vraagt: Waar woont je pa?
Dan wijst hij met zijn handje.
Met zijn vingertje en zijn duim,
Op zijn hoed draagt hij een pluim,
Aan zijn arm een mandje.
Dag, mijn lieve Jantje!

The literal English translation reads:

In The Hague there lives an count

And his son’s name is Jantje

When you ask him “where does your Father live?”

He will point to it with his small hand.

With his fingers and his thumb

On his hat he has/wears a plume

On his arm a basket

Goodbye my sweet/dearest Jantje

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

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