Laughter is the Best Medicine

The Laughing Cavalier: Identity Revealed?

It’s a pleasure to be here and to tell you about
my research on the Laughing Cavalier in the Wallace Collection, one of my favourite paintings by Frans Hals, of course, and yours probably too. It was quite a job to do as it is based on archival research and the archives are all in Dutch, ancient Dutch/ old Dutch and so it might be difficult for you to hear it all out. So, many expressions I have tried to translate into English and make it understandable, but if I skip a little bit, if I’m not explaining enough then please don’t hesitate to ask questions. There are questions afterwards when I will explain more if I have confused you or not been clear enough. The man’s identity has always remained a mystery
until recently, I hope. This inscription on the right above reads ‘Ao 1624’ and the age of the man ‘ÆT. SVÆ 26′. That has proved to be a big help for the identification. He must have been born in 1597 or 1598 and must have been a person of high status, considering the lavish gold and silver thread embroidery in his costume, and the fine lace on his ruff and cuffs. This is emphasised even more by the gilt hilt of a rapier, which pops out between the sleeve and the cloak. Because of the rapier he was thought to be an officer of the civic guard of Haarlem. However, we are able to disregard this suggestion completely. None of the officers or subalterns of the two Haarlem Civic Guard companies, serving in the period between 1621 and 1624, was born in the year 1597 or 1598. All the records of the Haarlem civic guards are there. the serving men, the militia man and all the officers, we have all the names and lots of records so it definitely disproves. Besides officers always wore a sash in their companies colours across their shoulder. It can also be excluded that this man was an officer in the Dutch army, as they were
always portrayed with part of their armour, a gorget or a breastplate or a helmet set
on a table. Frans Hals portrayed this Laughing Cavalier in a rather casual, dashing manner,
compared to the more traditional portraits, like Michiel van Mierevelt, Jan van Ravesteyn,
Cornelis van der Voort, Paulus Moreelse in the cities of Amsterdam, Hague or Utrecht, or
in Haarlem, Frans Pietersz. de Grebber and Cornelis Engelsz, the father of Verspronck The identity of the man should be searched for in different circles. Hals’ portraits can be classified according to sitter’s family origin or profession. Hals portrayed Haarlem
citizens almost exclusively, rarely he painted a person from Amsterdam or Leiden, and most
of these from a later date then 1624. His only Amsterdam commission, he received in
1633 from the Amsterdam Civic Guard, the so called ‘Meagre Company’ at the Rijks museum. However, Hals declined to finish the group portrait in Amsterdam, not even after the
urgent requests of the Amsterdam officers, on account of other commissions in Haarlem
and the high expenses of lodgings in Amsterdam. The last 6 officers refused to sit for Hals
in Haarlem, and as a result, the completion of the ‘Meagre Company’ was entrusted to Pieter Codde. It seems more plausible that we must look for the identity of the Laughing Cavalier among the Haarlem elite. He certainly did not belong to the group of regent patricians who Hals portrayed in a more subdued dignified fashion and dressed in quiet dark costumes,
like for instance in the portrait of Jacob Pietersz Olycan from 1625 in the Mauritshuis. The Portrait
of Cornelis Backer, Burgomaster, from 1630 in the Frick Collection in New York or of the portrait of
Burgomaster Nicolaes van der Meer from 1631 in Frans Hals Museum in Haarlem. These prominent rules of the city, had themselves portrayed confidently of their status in simple black costumes, like the senators in Ancient Rome who without distinction wore the same
simple toga as a sign of their dignity. The Laughing Cavalier compares more to a different
type of portrait, such as the Marriage Portrait of Isaac Massa and Beatrix van der Laen of
1622, in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam or the portrait of Willem van Heythuyzen from 1625
in Munich, where he stands with a sword a rapier, against a pavilion with a drapery,
in front of a love garden. Very impressive as he is full standing, for Hals that is quite unusual. It was more Flemish in Holland not to do that sort of thing, it was too aristocratic. Van Heythuyzen was an aristocrat, through his mother, so that was why he had Hals paint him like that. I published that in a separate article, which I’m not going to discuss any further. I continue, you probably know from Kenwood
house, the portrait of Pieter van den Broecke, who actually was from Amsterdam, but had a
sister in Haarlem, who he visited on her summer estate, in the regions of Haarlem, in Bloemandaal. The Willem Coymans portrait in Washington from 1645, which is also much more casual, and the Isaac Massa portrait from 1626 in Toronto. Issa Massa is bending over the back
of the chair and starting to address the viewer. This is most casual and unheard of in Dutch
portraiture to present a sitter in that way. Hals reserved that type of dashing and casual
style for only this group of very wealthy Flemish merchants, like Van den Broecke and Coymans and Heythuysen who had emigrated to Haarlem after the fall of Antwerp and the blockade of its harbour by the Dutch fleet. Hals was favoured by this group of Antwerp
merchants for his portrait style, which earlier had originated in Antwerp from about 1610
after Rubens had returned from Italy and painted his famous Self-portrait with Isabella Brant. Hals himself visited Antwerp for a period of 3 months he is documented there as leaving Haarlem in 1616 after he finished the Civic Guard piece of 1616, the Civic Guard of St. George
and came back at the beginning of December when he had to pay for a nurse, who was taking
care of his children while he was away and he did not cough up the money. So he had a problem. Thus the man in the Laughing Cavalier could be found within this group of merchants. His status must be similar to Isaac Massa’s or Willem van Heythuysen’s and just like them, he probably must be an important merchant with the same roots. Such a man in fact can be found in this circle of internationally operating merchants: Willem van Heythuysen’s
closest friend, Tieleman Roosterman, his executor and also the first regent of the Almshouse
of Willem van Heythuysen, founded in 1650. They almost became related by family, when
Willem van Heythuysen was engaged to be married to Tieleman Roostermans youngest sister Alida,
who unfortunately died just before the marriage in May 1647 would take place. This information is crucial for the identification because I came across it in an eighteenth century
hand copied family booklet of the Roosterman family and their descendants from about 1740. Yet more personal information about Tieleman Roosterman can be found in this manuscript. The author, J.P. van Mansvelt, who was a descendent of the Roostermans, mentions Tieleman’s date of birth in 1597 which corresponds with the age in the inscription on the Laughing Cavalier. There exists also another portrait of Tieleman Roosterman by Frans Hals in the Cleveland Museum bearing the inscription ‘ÆTA SVÆ 36 and the year 1634 This is a big help and is almost in the same
manner as in the Laughing Cavalier portrait the calligraphy is very similar. The date of birth matches the record of Tieleman Roosterman’s marriage on 27 November 1631, in which he is recorded
as a bachelor from Gogh a small village which used to belong to the Netherlands, but was conquered by the Bishop of Cologne because it was an a mennonite enclave a textile industry, and the Bishop of Cologne just wanted to chase all these Mennonites out, because they were heretics
and they could not be condoned within his empire. So the whole village of Gogh and all
its merchants fled in the direction of Haarlem, because Haarlem also had linen industries,
they mainly produced linen and this way the Roostermans also came to Haarlem. But this I shall tell you a bit later in the talk. The date of birth, in which he is recorded
as a bachelor from Gogh, he is 33 years old. And in December of that year he would turn 34. The pendant of his wife Catharina Brugmans, that portrait is in a private collection,
very secret, it had been salvaged from Berlin after the Second World War, the family was
able to keep it, it was not stolen and they always claimed that they don’t have it any
more but it’s now in New York and nobody is supposed to know. I’ve seen it but that’s it. And the biographical information on that portrait is also correct. So we have solid documents to prove what we are talking about, in this regard. So this biographical information induced
further research into the hypothesis that Tieleman Roosterman indeed could be the man
in the Laughing Cavalier and thus had his portrait painted by Hals at two different occasions. The fact that the first portrait, The Laughing
Cavalier in 1624 and 1631, the Marriage portrait is done with his wife. There is a gap between
that and it can be explained that Tieleman Roosterman went to Genoa, went to Venice,
to Italy. He was a textile merchant and he spent almost 4 years in Italy, to connect
with the silk industry and for the exportation of linen and woollen cloth from Haarlem. He
wished to make business connections and build up a business there, and he became enormously
rich. He was already rich but became even more. So that explains why the portrait was
made in 1624 as he left his parents and he wanted to leave his image behind so they still
had him at the house and still could think about him with the image in front of them. Also in case he never came back, they had an image to remember him. That was usually what was done in Holland,
also for single portraits and for people who had died, posthumously sometimes the portrait
was made. The resemblance is of course important as
we have two portraits now in 1624 The Laughing Cavalier and Tieleman Roosterman of Cleveland. The questions was, is there a resemblance? The comparison between the two portraits is hampered by the fact that the Roosterman in the Cleveland portrait is presented in a frontal pose while the Laughing Cavalier’s features are only partially visible from aside. In the American portrait Roosterman’s ears
are covered by his hair. In the Laughing Cavalier the hair is mostly covered by his hat hiding the prominent forelock in the Cleveland portrait. The hair of Tieleman Roosterman in the Cleveland portrait is longer and straighter but hangs less straight along the left side of his face ending in curly locks just above his shoulder. Yet there is a resemblance in the boisterous
upturned ends of the moustache and goatee which has become fuller in the Cleveland portrait. The hair matches in colour, but in the Laughing Cavalier it is cut shorter and made curlier by a curling iron. Strikingly similar is the left eyebrow You see there is a small scar, some of the hairs are growing downwards. There is very straight upturn in the eyebrow. It is bushy at the beginning and it ends with more separate hairs as you can see. Also you can see that not only the expression in his eyes but also their colour and shape and the
thick circles under them bear a strong resemblance, as well as the shape of the nose, mouth and the chin. A remarkably similar feature are the deep lines between the eyebrows which have become more pronounced at a later
age, as it normally does, in the Cleveland portrait. There is more pointing in the direction of Roosterman. The conspicuous embroidery in his costume, of his doublet catches the eye immediately. At close inspection three motifs
stand out. We spot the winged staff and hat of Mercury right away Followed by the motif of an arrow and here you have an oil lamp with bees flying into it The arrow motif points at Amor’s arrow piercing his victim’s heart and the bees flying into the flaming torch comes from an emblem of how
the lovesick without a will of their own are drawn into the flame of love. The symbolism of the embroidery indicates that the man in the Laughing Cavalier is unmarried, which
does not conflict with the hypothesis that he represents Tieleman Roosterman who was
still unmarried in 1624. The Laughing Cavalier presents himself also with these emblems and references to the emblematic literature, as a true gentleman according to the gentilhuomo
in Il Cortegiano by Baldassare Castiglione, which at that time was very much on vogue
in Haarlem, in Court circles in the Hague and in Antwerp also. There was a French translation
of the gentilhuomo in circulation and that tells a gentlemen how he was expected to balance
reason and the senses, and knew how to conquer the dangers of love and life. Amor’s arrow could also allude to the coat of arms of Tieleman Roosterman consisting of four fields and these are the arrows in the fields, three
arrows, gold arrows on blue. Moreover, the crest depicts a figure in harness, upholding an arrow. Of course he is protected by his armour, he’s not going to die from an arrow. Together the winged staff and hat of Mercury point to trade activities but also to the creative side of young people and to the arts of which Mercury was the inspiration. The arrow in the hand and the bees together These embroidery motifs are all allusions to his personal way of life and also to his person. He was of quite illustrious descent, but can find
some more reasons to support the identification of the Laughing Cavalier as Tieleman Roosterman? In the context of the Laughing Cavalier we should pay attention to the illustrious origins of Tieleman Roosterman. As in the Laughing Cavalier, Roosterman carries a rapier in his Cleveland portrait. He also has his hands on the hilt and the shape of the sword through the mantle. So in both portraits the man is carrying a rapier. Traditionally, the right to carry a rapier was the exclusive privilege of the aristocracy though later officers and regent
patricians took to carrying a rapier in public. In Haarlem the former aristocracy had already
died out in the century before or had left to go the court in Brussels. In the new Dutch Republic no new letters of nobility were granted. Only a few rich Haarlem citizens were ennobled,
but by the German emperor they were Catholics or in diplomatic service like for instance the De Kies van Wissen family they were ennobled because of one of their son’s was a page at the court in Vienna and they were an old Catholic family in Haarlem. Or adopted an aristocratic
lifestyle, like some Dutch regent patricians who bought country manors including the seigniorial rights such as Johannes Coymans, who bought the title of Lord of Bruchem tot Nieuwael and his son Balthasar who held the title of Lord of Streefkerk. In Haarlem merely a few acquired a title in such a fashion because it was considered nouveau rich especially by the regent patricians and they looked down upon it. The circle of the Laughing Cavalier
is, as we established above, very small and elite. Tieleman Roosterman most certainly
belonged to this exclusive circle and as far as we know, he seems to be the only candidate considering the corresponding year of his birth. To emphasize his extraordinary social status Roosterman had his portrait painted carrying a rapier so it had a meaning, he
did not dare the old Haarlem regent patrticans but he had a right to wear it. It was a confirmation
of what he was and what his background was But did he belong to the new lords
of the manor like the Coymans family? It appears that Tieleman Roosterman descends from an illustrious non-aristocratic family. He was the eldest son of Jan Roosterman and
Christina Coebergh and upon his birth received the name of his grandfather, who had fled
from Antwerp eastwards to the area of Gogh. So they first fled from Antwerp were there were struggles against their religion. They settled there in on his country estate, called Issum in the Duchy of Cleves that had become part of
the Duchy of Guelre at that time. His grandfather Tieleman Roosterman was married to Alida Pauw who was a granddaughter of Reinier Pauw, Burgomaster of Gouda. The Pauw family was a wealthy and
very important family in Government circles they always held high Government positions and after the war of the Dutch Independence against the Spaniards they held special positions as ambassadors and envoyees. They owned a fortune. One branch settled in the Hague and were at
Court and in the State General and one branch was in Amsterdam, trading and playing an important part in building up the West India Company. To give you the scoop on the family Jan Roosterman was their eldest son who emigrated from Gogh,
fleeing from the bishop of Utrecht, to Haarlem in 1589 where his daughter Wendeltie was
baptized in the St. Bavo Curch in 1599. So they were not Mennonites, they were
Calvanists and they presented themselves at the Bavo church and became members of the
Dutch Reformed Church The family rented a house in the Korte Bagijnestraat and later after his marriage Tieleman and his young wife Catharina Brugmans rented a magnificent residence with an extensive garden in the Smedestraat which he later bought for 11,0025
Carolus Guilders which for Haarlem houses is a tremendous sum of money. A house next to a brewery cost 4 to 5,000 Guilders, so he doubled the size of the rich regent patricians
house who were mostly brewers. Like his close friend Willem van Heythuysen Tieleman Roosterman was an internationally operating textile merchant active in London, Paris and Frankfurt. Like Heythuysen, he could boast illustrious family origins giving him the right to carry a rapier though his father had lost the property in Issum due to the acts of war during the eighty years Dutch Independence War He still possessed the legal right to his estates which passed to his eldest son and the generations after. Also the provenance brings some very interesting
points about the Laughing Cavalier. Is there a connection of the Laughing Cavalier with the Roosterman family to be found? The oldest provenance record goes back to the auction of the art and rare book collection of the Dowager Joan Hendrik van Heemserck at the Hague in 1770. It appears from the Roosterman family booklet which I referred to earlier,
and from which you saw the Coat of Arms this is one of the pages from where you see the coat of arms of Roosterman’s grandfather and grandmother (Pauw) and here you see the handwriting
of Mansvelt, he copied it from the family Bible remembering each generation up to 1740. So the family booklet is important as it explains that Jean Henri van Heemskerck, a Count of the Holy Roman Empire, as his father had received letters of nobility
from the German emperor when he was ambassador at the court in Vienna and helped with the
peace negotiations with the solving of the war of Spanish Succession. And we know he was related distantly to the Roosterman family through his mother Cornelia Pauw. After the death of Tieleman Roosterman in 1673 the portrait must have been passed on to his only still living son Henry Roosterman He had no male heirs, so Henry’s only surviving daughter
Christina Maria Roosterman probably inherited the Roosterman portraits at his demise in 1697. She was married to Pieter Crommelin, also a very wealthy textile merchant, who
suddenly died during a journey to Batavia. It was very tragic, he went to Batavia to escape his debt he had speculated on the stock exchange and had lost an enormous sum of
money and so fled from his creditors. He died on the way to Batavia. Together they only had one son, Henry, named after
his grandfather, who was left in a financially precarious circumstances. His guardians had
to sell all his goods to settle his debts. Probably at that moment the decision was made
to sell the portrait of Henry’s great-grandfather. It is very well possible that Joan Hendrik
van Heemskerck then acquired the portrait from the Crommelins because of his distant
relation to the Roosterman family. However, up untill now no will or probate inventory was
found to corroborate the way the portrait came into the possession of the Van Heemskerck family. Was it just a coincidence that Willem van Heemskerck one of the sons of Jean Henry
van Heemskerck, was married to Antonia Petronella Elsevier, the daughter of Abraham Elsevier
and Antonia Roosterman of Rotterdam. So there are strong links between the families and
that could explain how the portrait ended up in the Heemskerck Collection because he was related usually you did not own portraits of people who were not your family in your house. That started much later when a portrait became a true work of art and also in probate inventories you see that the portraits are also kept separate from the rest of the art collection
and they either go directly to the family the paintings are sold or given to relatives, friends etc. So portraits remained a family business. So the Heemskerck connection with Cornelia Pauw is important. So, may we conclude that the identification of the Laughing Cavalier
as the portrait of Tieleman Roosterman is plausible enough. We might on many accounts to wish for more information. It is simply not available or I have not found it yet, there many be some conclusive evidence but I’ve worked through the provenance index and
I’ve gone through the Harlem probate inventories from Volume 1 of the notary archives to 1420. I do it on Saturdays and I started in 1990. It is a treasure trove of many many details
on families, family possessions and how things are inherited and believe me if there is something to be found it might be in another town, not in Haarlem. The age in the inscription
corresponds to the information from the Roosterman family manuscript and to the portrait of Tieleman
Roosterman in Cleveland. Both men carry a rapier, a rare privilege in Haarlem society. It seems an extraordinary coincidence that this happens to be this one person, but would
it not be more exceptional, nearly impossible even, if all this information would coincide
with two different people. Other candidates than Tieleman Roosterman simply do not come into consideration simply by checking the few squires living in Haarlem at that time None of them being a bachelor of 26 years of age. Not the least important is the likeness
of both portraits on top of the emblematic allusions to the Roosterman coat of arms and
the crest in the embroidery of the sleeves of the costume of the Laughing Cavalier, which,
from now on, we can safely call Tieleman Roosterman. If I may, this is just an observation, a rather
topical one I suppose. The Cleveman Roosterman’s and the Laughing Cavalier, I’m no costume
historian but the fashions change immensely in Holland at this time but it’s quite interesting
that they both wear the same ruff and the same cuff, particularly, with the same lace
structure, possibly even the same hat. This is interesting as particularly in the 30s
the styles had changed considerable from 20s when even Masser was portrayed with the same
ruff as the Laughing Cavalier. Yes the lace was so costly, even the hats
were so costly, that you wore your costumes for a longer period. Only the cuffs
and the ornaments. The lace was sewn on as the collar was washed separately and there were special lace washers in Haarlem, who did it in a very delicate way. Linen you could treat much roughly
to get it clean, they even used lime for it, whereas this would ruin the lace, so it had
to be done in a special way. Also the cuffs could be very easily take them off they were easily sewn off and on to your costume because he had servants. The complications of the costume and the intricacies of the fashion proved your standing, your social status. And this is a man who had that status. Also the simplicity, in the Cleveland you see the cuffs are the same but the colour has changed, you have thinner layers and it’s longer, so it’s an adjustment to fashion. Though the lace again was so costly so it would have been used to impress. And of course there is silk velvet, so it
would have been very expensive to have it in his cloak and also the tassels Do you think therefore the painting should be renamed or would that be against commercial interest? The question is should the painting be renamed
now or would that be against commercial interests. It’s not something I could respond to. Such extensive research as yours is wonderful, we have a much better sense of who exactly Hal’s patrons were. I’m also intrigued by the costume because it is so much more colourful than
Hals’ other male portraits, and indeed even Roosterman’s later costume. But now he is a married man Indeed, but I wondered would a costume like this be intended for a specific occasion Can you think of what type of an occasion would it have been? The age difference and the marital status determined what he was wearing. So, when you are a bachelor and very wealthy, you were allowed to wear more colourful costumes. You were allowed to be flamboyant to show that you were unmarried People could approach you, brothers
who had sisters, parents who wanted a groom. But once you were married you were doomed
to wear black for a man, for a woman also. For Calvinist women, you could have the finest
costume, the finest textiles and laces but you were not supposed to wear bright colours,
unless you were an aristocrat at court. That was only a small circle and that was
looked down upon as that was associated with courtesans. The embroidery is quite unique, not only the attention given to it but also this whole compendium of different emblematic motifs. This helped construct the idea that this was
Roosterman, as I had the idea earlier when I compared it to the Cleveland portrait that
the Laughing Cavalier was the same man. But I didn’t have enough arguments to prove it. So it was a great help to find the manuscript from 1740 where you really could have a full
scope of the family, helping with provenance and the descent of the Roosterman family andthe
Heemskerck family who later owned the picture so allowed for the theory to be constructed. I think that the emblematic embroidery is also always personal in genre picture emblems
are used for certain situations, but in portraiture it is always personal so it helped the identification. The arrow and the crest with the man with armour holding up the arrow. Of course being a bachelor with the bees and the oil lamp helped make the connection. Have you found other examples in clothes or costume of a part of a crest of heraldry being
isolated from the rest in that way, in this case just the arrow has been taken, and whether that would be used to denote, whether people would think of the family. I can’t think of
examples but there are examples, where you have a telling coat of arms which is referred
to in other objects in the portrait. The Laughing Cavalier has a deformity on his
forehead, it appears under his hat. Does Roosterman have such a deformity?
Yes, it’s a shadow. The question is if the embroidery was occasioned
for a VIP wedding which Roosterman attended or was invited too, or had to attend because
of his relations. Yes, I can’t say, because you see more costume
details in other Dutch portraits where it’s always related too the person himself and
not to the person who invite you. That’s typical for childrens’ costume too you find things which are typical for the family and also they are holding objects which are part of the family I have an example I have also identified this portrait also, that’s in the Burlington Magazine article as a Roman Catholic family, Van Campen. You see a small child here sitting and now in the next portrait, you see again a small child, they are wearing the same costume the same hat, the same cuffs and the coral necklace. The painting has been split in two so it used to be one large painting with 10 family members all together the provenance is known and through the provenance and lineage they could be identified both children and parents. This child was added posthumously by Salomon de Bray in 1628 the picture itself is from about 1624 when the latest child was born. And so things are repeated and all is related to the family itself. At least not to my knowledge. Can I just ask you about the Cleveland’s portrait and the colour of the eyes? because I haven’t seen the original. They don’t look as chestnut-brown as the Cavalier’s. No, they have a blue tint. It’s difficult as it doesn’t pick up in the slide but it’s greyish blue. The blue is faded, it’s difficult to judge what the original colour was, in both paintings. I think it’s also important to take into account
the difference in Hal’s handling between the 20s and the 30s, changes in stylistic approach
to painting, hence certain differences. Also the change in colour, Hal’s The Laughing
Cavalier is painted on a light ground and so the colours become much much brighter while it’s typical of Hals in the 1630s, it starts in 1627 into the 30s that he does it on a more yellow, more oakish background, sometimes with a bit of Siena, a bit of grey added to
it. And you get a completely different effect. Hel also paints thinner not thick. Leaving aside the identification of the name and the family it does seem surprising that
the resemblance between the two portraits hadn’t been commented on before, when it’s
from the same artist. Yes, it’s so complicated and also it became
more about they were the same age and I found the year of birth the similar inscription and the coat of arms on the Roosterman portrait in Cleveland I got stuck and I had to build a case. I think it’s very interesting that the particular
feature of Hal’s Laughing Cavalier portrait is the really spectacular textiles and the contrast between the different sorts of textiles I thought it was quite interesting in light that this man was a textile manufacturer so perhaps it’s a way of publishing that he
is at the top of that market. Well not really as it’s not weaving the embroidery which would have been either done in Italy or in Haarlem, or in Amsterdam where another
branch of his family was Women did the embroidery and it was very expensive with silver and
gold thread and very time consuming to do. So he must have spent a fortune on this doublet,
and you see it in a very exceptional way. Let me show you the Civic Guard portrait of
1616 and here you see the Civic Guard of 1627 which is also on a light/white ground as it
was in a shadowy spot. Here you see the costume also with embroidery and he is an ensign, he is
wearing the banner, and ensigns were supposed to be unmarried as in battle you were at the
front you were the first to be killed. During the battle you had to run in front and put
the banner down and then the rest had to fight to you, or not if the battle went badly. If it was a married man then there would be widows and children and enormous costs etc. so it
would not work well. And you also see the bright colour, this is the real difference and here you see the same the St George of 1627 and that’s an darker background, you can see the tremendous difference it makes depending on which background portraits of the same year. This was less catchier as he had less time

One thought on “The Laughing Cavalier: Identity Revealed?

  1. I never understood the title because the man is not laughing but "smiling".
    So why not "The Smiling Cavalier" would seem more accurate.

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