Portrait of a Crossbowman
Portrait of a Crossbowman

CONTINENTAL - 17TH CENTURY (founded 1600)

Portrait of a Crossbowman

c. 1600 Europe

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European School

16th Century

Portrait of a Crossbowman

Oil on oak panel

Image size: 27 x 35 inches

Contemporary style frame
This early work, depicting a gentleman holding a crossbow winder, was produced in the Low Countries
in the first quarter of the 17th century. The man is dressed in black, the colour of choice in the Low
Countries during this period. To the modern eye, his clothing appears to be relatively sombre, but on
closer inspection, it is apparent that the artist has conveyed the elevated status of his sitter through
bringing out the differing textures of the material that make up his costume.

The Gentleman’s golden jewel-covered belt is particularly well painted and indicates that the sitter was
the holder of some form of civic position, perhaps linked to the crossbow, which is referred to both in
the coat of arms in the top right hand side of the portrait, and the crossbow winder in his hand. The
crossbow was a popular weapon of choice on the continent and it is possible that the sitter served as a
prominent member of one of the many crossbow guilds in towns across the Low Countries, as an officer
in a civic militia.
Height 35.25 inch (89.53 cm)
Width 26.75 inch (67.94 cm)
Oil on oak panel
Darnley Fine Art

Darnley Fine Art

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