This painting was formerly part of a much larger composition, which at some point was cut into smaller pieces. The Scottish National Gallery also owns another fragment from the same work (NG 2259). The picture has previously been ascribed to various Dutch artists, including to Jacob Gerritsz Cuyp and Karl van Mander III, but it has more recently been attributed to Jan Daemen Cool. Cool painted a number of family portraits. This painting is from the left of the original composition. Two young boys stand against a seascape with a huge gunship anchored off-shore. They are dressed in fashionable clothes and so clearly belong to a wealthy family. The inclusion of boats and the sea may allude to the family’s involvement with the shipping industry.