Paintings Acquired from Vermeer During or Soon after the Artist's Death

Diego Duarte - "a small painting with a lady playing the clavecin, with accessories, by Vermeer"

A Lady Seated at a Virginal, Johannes Vermeer
A Lady Seated at a Virginal
Johannes Vermeer
c. 1670–1675
Oil on canvas, 51.5 x 45.5 cm.
National Gallery, London

Diego Duarte was an immensely wealthy Antwerp jeweler and banker. "It is suggestive that Duarte maintained contact with Holland through Constantijn Huygens the Younger, who, like Johan Larson [a sculptor who purchased a tronie head from Vermeer] lived in The Hague. Duarte's father had a clavecin made for Huygens, and Duarte corresponded with Huygens about music. He also was an accomplished organist and composer. With the musical interests it is appropriate that Duarte's Vermeer represented in his inventory number 182, "a small painting with a lady playing the clavecin, with accessories."1 Duarte's picture was valued at 150 guilders.

  1. Albert Blankert (with contributions by Rob Rurrs and Willem van der Watering), Vermeer, Oxford: Phaidon, 1978.