BRAY, Jan de
(b. ca. 1627, Haarlem, d. 1697, Haarlem)
Haarlem Printer Abraham Casteleyn and His Wife Margarieta van Bancken1663
Oil on canvas, 84 x 108 cm
Abraham Casteleyn is best known as the publisher of one of the earliest news sheet, De Opregte Haerlemse Courant, which was published from 1656 to 1942.
There is an autograph drawing by Jan de Bray in which Margarieta van Bancken is pointing at an overgrown archway through which two children can be seen climbing some steps carrying produce from the garden. This gave rise to the assumption that the painting originally was large. However, another autograph drawing also exists which matches the painting in every respect. A closer study of the painting showed that it could never have been larger.
For long time the sitters were believed to be Willem Blaauw and his wife.