Head of an Old Woman, with a Ruff and a Cap

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Head of an Old Woman, with a Ruff and a Cap c 1650 - 1660
The woman’s physiognomy and facial expression can be found in four other studies of an old lady’s head, all attributed to Jordaens. The drawing entered the collection with an attribution to the Dutch School, due to an inscription on the verso bearing the name of the Dutch artist Hendrick Goltzius (1558-1617). The discovery of Jordaens’s name on the verso, however, supports an attribution to him. It has been suggested that the sitter is Jordaens’s mother-in-law, but this has not been widely accepted. The realistic way in which the woman is depicted makes it likely that Jordaens drew this model from life.

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Attribution, verso


  • Acc. No. D 1683
  • Medium Black chalk, heightened with white chalk on paper
  • Size 30.10 x 19.50 cm
  • Credit David Laing Bequest to the Royal Scottish Academy, transferred 1910