Cherchez parmi plus de 100 millions d'objets dans notre base de données de prix réalisés

The surrender of the Royal Prince during The Four Days' Battle, 1st-4th
Vendu

À propos de l'objet

The Four Days' Battle was fought off the coast of Flanders and in the southern North Sea between the Dutch and English fleets on the 11th to 14th June 1666, during the Second Anglo-Dutch War.  It was the first test of the newly refitted Dutch fleet under Lieut. Admiral Michiel de Ruyter following the severe defeat of the Dutch by the English at the Battle of Lowestoft in 1665.  In this picture, Van de Velde has recorded the most significant episode of the battle which occurred during the 3rd day, when the English fleet commanded by George Monck, 1st Duke of Albemarle was attempting to withdraw to the Thames.  Ignoring warnings, Albemarle ordered his fleet to set a course across the infamous Galloper Shoal at low tide.1  The Royal Charles and the Royal Catherine both grounded twice, but managed to free themselves, but the deeper-drafted English flagship, the Royal Prince, commanded by Sir George Ayscue, Admiral of the White Squadron, ran hard aground, rendering it helpless.  Ayscue urged his men to remain calm and wait for the flood tide to refloat his flagship, but when two Dutch fireships approached, a certain "waterman of  Lambeth" panicked, and struck the flag, and made surrender inevitable.  Ayscue signalled his surrender by lowering the white ensign at the stern, and his own white flag (as Admiral of the White) from the mainmast, as we see figures near the top of the mast doing here.  The surrender was taken by the Gouda, commanded by Captain Isaac  Sweers, which is seen from its port quarter to the right, and which can be identified by the arms of the city of Gouda on its stern, an upright sword flanked by six gold stars, born by two carved and gilded lions.  Sweers' flag and pendant are flying form the mizzen as rear-admiral of the Amsterdam squadron.  The Gouda has sent out dories bearing the Dutch prince's flags, which will supplant the white flags, and the Gouda's flag-captain, Jacob Philips, who received Ayscue's formal surrender on board the Royal Prince.  The Dutch Admiral Cornelis Tromp had by this stage transferred his flag to the Gouda from his damaged ship the Hollandia, and it is seen here flying from the main.  In the extreme left we see the English fleet sailing away in the distance, and the smoke of battle still hangs in the air above the entire scene.  Subsequently the Royal Prince was burnt at the orders of Admiral De Ruyter, to prevent her recapture.  On the 4th day of the battle, Prince Rupert's return from the west averted a serious defeat of the English.\nWillem van de Velde the Younger is renowned as the greatest marine painter of the Dutch Golden Age, and this picture has been described as "one of his supreme achievements."2  It is one of at least five paintings of the capture of the Royal Prince that he was responsible for, directly or indirectly, but as George Keyes remarked, all the others lack "the supreme quality and narrative force of the present picture."3  Although it was Willem van de Velde the Younger whose mastery of the brush breathed life into subjects such as this, he and his father Willem van de Velde the Elder ran a joint workshop, from which the Younger's oil paintings and the Elder's much rarer grisaille pen paintings or penschilderijen emanated.  Willem van de Velde the Elder made two penschilderijen on large canvases of the present subject, neither of which share their compositions with the present picture: in Amsterdam, Amsterdam Museum (on loan from the Rijksmuseum), dated 1668; and Karlsruhe, Staatliche Kunsthalle (commissioned by Cardinal Leopold de' Medici, and subsequently in the Chigi collection), dated 1672.4\nThe production of both father and son depended on enormous numbers of drawings made by both, for much of their careers in a consistent shorthand style that often makes them hard to distinguish from each other, particularly since they are often signed with initials by the other - perhaps several years later.  The Van de Veldes made careful construction drawings in black chalk on paper of the profiles and sterns of ships, to be incorporated into finished paintings in which attention to detail was paramount.  These drawings were often reversed by counterproofing, if the vessel to be depicted needed to be seen in another direction.  Sometimes these drawings were worked up in wash and, less frequently, touched in with pen and ink, and both artists sometimes worked on each other's drawings.  They often made such construction drawings of the same ship on different occasions, probably to ensure that changes in detail following refits were kept pace with.  If Van de Velde used precise drawings for the Royal Prince and Gouda in this painting, they have not been found, but other drawings of these ships are known and may have served as a guide:  for example the one of the Royal Prince in the Victoria & Albert Museum, which was probably made at Chatham in 1661, and which in any case predates the major refit of 1663, or the one in Rotterdam, which was more likely used for the painting in the Rijksmuseum.5  A careful study of the  Gouda in Rotterdam, a reworked counterproof done circa 1670, was used for a penschilderij by the Elder in Karlsruhe.6  A further highly detailed drawing of the Gouda, done by the Elder in circa 1672, is in the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich, but there are differences in the details between the present painting and the drawing, which would in any case have had to have been reversed by counterproof.7\nThe Van de Veldes took attention to detail in the depiction of battles far beyond  the making of accurate construction drawings of ships, and extended fully as far as reportage in the heat of battle.  They were quite literally early war artists.  They - most usually Willem van de Velde the Elder - customarily sailed with the fleet in their own galliot, and made numerous rapid black chalk drawings of events as they unfolded on long strips of paper made of sheets glued together, and unwound between two rollers.8 Usually, they were worked up in grey wash, almost certainly later on, and probably after the return to shore.  Many of these drawings, have been broken up into manageable sizes, but some still many feet long survive.  Inscriptions, frequently copious, identify the vessels and events, and very often their own small galliot is included in the drawings, identified by an inscription such as "dit is mijn galjoot".\nWillem van de Velde the Elder probably went to sea without his son when joining the Dutch fleet before the Four Days' Battle.9  An order of 6th June from the Commander of the Dutch fleet De Ruyter to Captain Govert Pietersz., master of a galliot, instructs him to receive on board "Willem van de Velde, ship's draughtsman, and to go with him ahead or astern or with the fleet, or in such manner as he may judge serviceable for the drawings to be made without failing in any way whatsoever under penalty of severe punishment", and on 5th July, following the return of the victorious Dutch fleet to Vlissingen, the Dutch Council of State approved of his sketches made "while on board a vessel with the knowledge and authority of Lieut Admiral De Ruyter", and decided that a price should be agreed with the artist for using the drawings to make into a grisaille (penschilderij), which were the preserve of the Elder.10  Van de Velde included the galliot in most of his drawings done during the Four Days' Battle, often more than once, and always flying a flag with two balls side by side at the mast head.  In one drawing in Rotterdam, he shows their galliot joining the Dutch fleet on 6th June, just before the Four Days' Battle (inscribed "Sunday 6th June as I joined the States fleet"), and in another, on the first day of the battle, he draws his galliot running before the wind on a larger-than-normal scale in the foreground, identified by the inscription: mijn galliodt.11  In a third, done the day after the battle, he also shows it near to us, close hauled on the starboad tack.12  Much less often, Willem van de Velde the Younger included the galliot in his paintings, and this picture is a rare example.  It is seen with the mainsail hauled up to reduce speed close to the stern of the Royal Prince, and in the centre a figure in a hat and a cloak may be seen, sketching away.  Their galliot is not clearly to be seen in paintings of other naval engagements, and is probably purposely specifically to demonstrate that Willem van de Velde the Elder was present.\nOf the many drawings that Willem van de Velde the Elder made of the Four Days' Battle, none has been identified as a particular prototype for this painting, and in general Willem van de Velde the Younger did not rely on drawings made by his father on the spot for the precise compositional scheme of his finished  paintings.  The Younger Van de Velde made a number of drawings of the Four Days' Battle which are not strictly compositional studies and are not reportage either, but are a half-way house, in which compositions based on fact are developed.  They were probably done in August or September 1666, and are based on the information brought back by his father's drawings made on the spot.  A sheet probably by the Younger in the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, shows the event depicted here, but the Royal Prince and Gouda are shown almost in line astern (see fig. 1).13  Willem van de Velde the Younger used the Greenwich drawing for one of the set of four depictions of the Four Days' Battle in the collection of the Earls of Derby at Knowsley, which probably date from much later - after 1678, and possibly in the 1690s.14  In both the drawing and the painting the Van de Velde galliot is present, head to wind astern of the Royal Prince, with its foresail furled and its mainsail flapping.\nOne would imagine that this subject - the capture of an English flagship that turned the course of a battle - would have had enormous appeal to a Dutch audience.  Nonetheless, Willem van de Velde continued to paint depictions of the Four Days' Battle, and indeed of other subjects unflattering to the English, long after they settled in London. Michael Robinson however, thought this picture should date from not long after the event depicted, and probably before the beginning of the Van de Velde's English period in 1672-3.  He noticed that whereas the Royal Prince's jack is depicted here as a plain white flag, in Van de Velde's drawings done on the 1st day of the battle, it is correctly shown as a Union Jack.  The Royal Prince is shown with Dutch round caps to the lower masts, with the ties running over them, instead of the square English caps.\nThis picture is Willem van de Velde's principal painting of the surrender of the Royal Prince.  A second version, much smaller and on panel was seen by Michael Robinson in the same collection as the present work at Stetchworth Park.15  Another treatment of the same subject, differently composed, is in the Fondation Custodia in Paris; another, partly by the Workshop, is in the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam; and yet another, probably a later copy or poor Workshop version is in The Mauritshuis, The Hague.16\n\nPROVENANCE\nThis picture has a remarkable provenance since the late 18th Century, since which it has been in just three family ownerships.\n\nJan Gildemeester assembled one of the most important private collections of Dutch 17th century paintings and drawings ever known, including three Rembrandts, the Vermeer Astronomer, and paintings by Pieter de Hooch, Jacob van Ruisdael, Meindert Hobbema, Gerrit Dou, Paulus Potter and Gerard Ter Borch.  The collection was housed in his house on the Herengracht in Amsterdam, and some of it may be seen in the grouip portrait of Gildemeester with friends in the interior of the house by Adriaan de Lelie, now in the Rijksmuseum.  At his sale in 1800, the  recently established Nationale Konstgallerij (a predecessor of the Rijksmuseum) tried to acquire the Willem van de Velde, which was considered a work of outstanding national importance, but they were outbid.17\nThe collection assembled by the 3rd Duke of Bridgwater and substantially added to by his heirs was by the mid-19th Century probably the finest collection of Old Master Paintings of all the European Schools ever seen in the British Isles.  It was the acquisition of a major part of the Orléans collection by the 3rd Duke at the very end of the 18th Century, which formed the core of the collection, which including three Raphaels, the Poussin Sacraments, and four Titians, among them the Diana and Callisto and the Diana and Actaeon recently acquired jointly by the National Galleries in London and Edinburgh.  The Dutch pictures include the Rembrandt self-portrait on loan to the National Galleries of Scotland.\n\n1.  The Galloper is in the southern North Sea beyond the Thames Estuary, due east of the Blackwater River, north-east of North Foreland, and due north of Calais.\n2.  See under Literature, 1990, p. 174.\n3.  Idem, p. 175.\n4.  Idem, pp. 33-8, nos. 113, 431.\n5.  Rotterdam, Museum Boymans-van Beuningen, inv. MB 1866/T352; see Keyes, 1990, under literature, pp. 261-2, no. 88, reproduced. The Royal Prince was built in 1610, and rebuilt twice, in 1641 and 1663, when it was transformed into Ist rate warship of 92 guns. Its 22-foot draught was to be its undoing.\n6.  See [M.S. Robinson], The Willem van de Velde Drawings in the Boymans-Van Beuningen Museum Rotterdam, Rotterdam 1979, vol. I, p. 96,  no. MB1866/T285,  reproduced vol. III, p. 119.\n7.  See M.S. Robinson, Van de Velde Drawings.  A Catalogue of Drawings in the National Maritime Museum made by the Elder and the Younger Willem van de Velde, Cambridge 1958, p. 149,  no. 349, reproduced p. 324.\n8.  Willem van de Velde first went to sea as a draughtsman as early as 1643, and from 1652 there is evidence that he was officially employed in that capacity.\n9.  As he had done during the Battle of the Sound in early November 1658.  Nonetheless, drawings clearly made on the spot are still often attributed to the Younger, and in some cases signed by him.\n10.  Quoted in translation in M.S. Robinson, op. cit., 1958,  pp. 8-9.\n11.  See [Robinson] 1979, vol. I, p. 41, no. MB1866/T61, & pp. 44-5, no. MB1866/T18a, &, reproduced vol. II, p. 116 & p. 135.\n12.  Idem, vol. I, p. 49, no. MB1866/T89a, reproduced vol. II, p. 158.\n13.  See Robinson, op. cit., 1958,  p. 131, no. 288, reproduced p. 309.  Robinson described this sheet as probably by the Younger, although there is no evidence that he was present during the battle.\n14.  See Robinson, under literature, 1990,  pp. 133-8, no. 424 1-4 (for the set), p. 137, no. 424 3, reproduced (for the surrender of the Royal Prince).  The Van de Velde galliot may be seen in several of the set.\n15.  See Robinson, op. cit., 1990, vol. I, pp. 145-6, no. 765.\n16.  Idem, pp. 146-151, nos. 161, 109 and 136, the latter two reproduced.\n17.  See De Bruyn Kops under literature.\nSigned with initials on the barrel lower centre: W/VV
GB
GB
GB

medium

Oil on canvas

creator

Willem Velde

condition

The following condition report is provided by Hamish Dewar, who is an external specialist and not an employee of Sotheby's. UNCONDITIONAL AND WITHOUT PREJUDICE Structural Condition The canvas has been lined and this is ensuring an even and secure structural support. The canvas is stretched onto a wooden keyed stretcher with one vertical central baton. Paint Surface The paint surface has an even varnish layer and inspection under ultra-violet light shows small scattered retouchings which are primarily around the framing edges and fine lines covering craquelure and a few small scattered spots. There is no evidence of any significant retouching although there may be other retouchings beneath the varnish layers which are not identifiable under ultra- violet light. The rigging and the fine details of the ships all appear to be in remarkably good and original condition with no evidence of abrasion or over-cleaning. Inspection under ultra-violet light also suggests that the varnish layers have discoloured and that cleaning could be beneficial. Summary The painting therefore appears to be in very good and stable condition and while no further work is required for reasons of conservation, cleaning should certainly considerably improve the overall appearance of the painting. "This lot is offered for sale subject to Sotheby's Conditions of Business, which are available on request and printed in Sotheby's sale catalogues. The independent reports contained in this document are provided for prospective bidders' information only and without warranty by Sotheby's or the Seller."

dimensions

75 1/2 by 106 cm.; 29 3/4 by 41 3/4 in.

exhibition

London, British Institution, 1838, no. 43; Minneapolis, The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, 23 September-31 December 1990, Toledo (Ohio), The Toledo Museum of Art, 27 January-21 April, Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 23 May-11 August 1991, Mirror of Empire.  Dutch Marine Art of the Seventeenth Century, no. 40.

literature

J. Britton, Gallery of Cleveland House, London 1808, no. 242; W.J. Ottley, Engravings of the Most Noble the Marquis of Stafford's Collection of Pictures in London, London 1818, no. 128, described in vol. 3; J. Smith, A Catalogue Raisonné... , vol. VI, London 1835, pp. 381-382, no. 219; A. Jameson, Companion to the Most Celebrated Galleries of Art in London, London 1844, pp. 77ff; G.F. Waagen, Treasures of Art in Great Britain, London 1854, vol. 2, p. 51, no. 7 ("Much more carefully executed in the details, and far more harmonious in its delicate grey tone, than most of the larger sea-pieces by this master that I have seen"); F.T. Kugler & G.F. Waagen, Handbook of Painting...,  London 1860, p. 465; Bridgewater House Catalogue, London  1903, no. 110; C. Hofstede de Groot, A Catalogue Raisonné..., vol VII, London 1923, p. 13, no. 27; Catalogue of the Collection of Pictures ... of the Earl of Ellesmere at Bridgewater House, Cleveland Square, etc, London 1926, no. 134; K. Zoege von Mantteufel, in U. Thieme & F. Becker, Allgemeines Lexikon der bildenden Künstler, vol. XXXV, Leipzig 1940, p. 204; J. de Bruyn Kops, 'De Amsterdamse verzamelaar Jan Gildemeester Jansz.', Bulletin van het Rijksmuseum, 13, 1965, p. 114, note 54; F.L. Fox, Great Ships, London 1980, p. 45, reproduced in colour; M.S. Robinson, Van de Velde. A Catalogue of the Paintings of the Elder and Younger Willem van de Velde, Greenwich 1990, vol. I, pp. 143-5, no. 75, reproduced; G.S. Keyes, Mirror of Empire.  Dutch Marine Art of the Seventeenth Century, exhibition catalogue, Cambridge & Minneapolis 1990, pp. 174-176, no. 40, reproduced in colour p. 175 (also p. 261, under no. 40). ENGRAVED: By T.C. Busky, 1812; By William Young Ottley, 1818.

provenance

Possibly Johannes Johannesz. Verkolje, son of the painter; His deceased sale, Amsterdam, De Winter, 24 October 1763, lot 21; Jacob van Zaanen; His sale, The Hague, Rietmulder, 16 November 1767, lot 2, for 600 Florins to Zwaart; Jan Gildemeester Jansz. (1744-1799), Dutch Consul-General of Portugal, Amsterdam; His deceased sale, Amsterdam, Van der Schley, 11-13 June 1800, lot 235, for 3,425 Florins to Westerwoud; Probably acquired by Francis Egerton (1736-1803), 3rd Duke of Bridgewater, Cleveland House (later Bridgewater House), St. James's, London, shortly before his death on 8th March 1803; Bequeathed by him with a life interest to his nephew George Granville Leveson-Gower (1758-1833), 1st Earl Gower, created 2nd Marquis of Stafford in 1803 and 1st Duke of Sutherland in 1833, London; By reversion according to the terms of the 3rd Duke of Bridgewater's Will to the 1st Duke of Sutherland's second son Lord Francis Leveson-Gower (1800-1857), who changed his name to Egerton, and was created 1st Earl of Ellesmere in 1846 (who rebuilt Bridgewater House); Thence by descent at Bridgewater House until the Second World War and subsequently at Stetchworth Park, Newmarket, until sold ('By order of the Trustees of the Ellesmere 1939 Settlement'), London, Christie's, 2 June 1976, lot 93, where acquired by Julia Kraus on behalf of the present owner.

signedDate

Signed with initials on the barrel lower centre: W/VV

consignmentDesignation

The Property of a Private Collector

creator_nationality_dates

Leiden 1633 - 1707 London


*Merci de noter que le prix n'est pas recalculé à la valeur actuelle, mais se rapporte au prix final réel au moment où l'objet a été vendu.

*Merci de noter que le prix n'est pas recalculé à la valeur actuelle, mais se rapporte au prix final réel au moment où l'objet a été vendu.


Publicité
Publicité

Objets vendus

No. 1 (Royal Red and Blue)
Vendu

No. 1 (Royal Red and Blue)

Prix réalisé
57,994,570 EUR

Four Marlons
Vendu

Four Marlons

Prix réalisé
55,544,790 EUR

Four Marilyns, 1962 – Andy Warhol
Vendu

Four Marilyns, 1962 – Andy Warhol

Prix réalisé
29,104,445 EUR

Das Soldatenbad (Artillerymen)
Vendu

Das Soldatenbad (Artillerymen)

Prix réalisé
19,404,631 EUR

Untitled [Bacchus 1st Version V]
Vendu

Untitled [Bacchus 1st Version V]

Prix réalisé
13,418,010 EUR

Vendu

Flag

Prix réalisé
11,529,066 EUR

Vendu

Summer day

Prix réalisé
9,017,616 EUR

Vendu

Ocean Park #55

Prix réalisé
9,058,545 EUR

Vendu

The Battle between Carnival and Lent

Prix réalisé
8,021,083 EUR

Vendu

Four Campbell's Soup Cans

Prix réalisé
7,065,254 EUR

Vendu

Le Viol

Prix réalisé
7,460,739 EUR