Wikipedia summarizes Western European fashion of 1650-1700s as:

“characterised by rapid change. Following the end of the Thirty Years’ War and the Restoration of England’s Charles II, military influences in men’s clothing were replaced by a brief period of decorative exuberance which then sobered into the coat, waistcoat and breeches costume that would reign for the next century and a half. In the normal cycle of fashion, the broad, high-waisted silhouette of the previous period was replaced by a long, lean line with a low waist for both men and women. This period also marked the rise of the periwig as an essential item of men’s fashion.”

Portrait of Magnus Gabriel De la Gardie with his wife Maria Euphrosyne

Fig. 1 - Hendrick Munnichoven. Portrait of Magnus Gabriel De la Gardie with his wife Maria Euphrosyne, 1653. Lidkoping: Läckö Castle. Source: Pinterest


Fig. 2 - David Teniers the Younger (Flemish, 1610-1690). Shepherdess, 1650. Oil on canvas; 58 x 52 cm (23 x 20 in). Saint Petersburg: Hermitage Museum, ГЭ-5595. Source: Wikimedia

Portrait of a Lady

Fig. 3 - Beaubrun the Younger and Charles BeauBrun. Portrait of a Lady, 1650-60. Source: Pinterest

Young Woman Peeling Apples

Fig. 4 - Nicolaes Maes (Dutch, 1634–1693). Young Woman Peeling Apples, ca. 1655. Oil on wood; 54.6 x 45.7 cm (21 1/2 x 18 in). New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 14.40.612. Bequest of Benjamin Altman, 1913. Source: The Met


[To come…]

The Van Moerkerken Family

Fig. 1 - Gerard ter Borch the Younger (Dutch, Zwolle 1617–1681 Deventer). The Van Moerkerken Family, ca. 1653–54. Oil on wood; 41.3 x 35.6 cm (16 1/4 x 14 in). New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1982.60.30. The Jack and Belle Linsky Collection, 1982. Source: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Baker and His Wife

Fig. 2 - Jan Steen (Netherlands, 1626-1679). The Baker and His Wife, 1658. Oil on panel; 38 x 32 cm (15 x 12 in). Amsterdam: Rijks Museum. Source: Pinterest

Market Scene with a Quack

Fig. 3 - Jan Victors (Netherlands, 1619-1676). Market Scene with a Quack, 1650. Oil on canvas; 79 x 99 cm (31 x 39 in). Source: Pinterest


Boy in a Turban holding a Nosegay

Fig. 1 - Michael Sweerts (Flemish, 1618-1664). Boy in a Turban holding a Nosegay, 1656-58. Oil on canvas; 87 x 74 cm (34.3 x 29.1 in). Madrid: Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, 385 (1981.19). Source: Pinterest

The Lacemaker

Fig. 2 - Nicolaes Maes (Dutch, 1634–1693). The Lacemaker, ca. 1656. Oil on canvas; 45.1 x 52.7 cm (17 3/4 x 20 3/4 in). New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 32.100.5. The Friedsam Collection, Bequest of Michael Friedsam, 1931. Source: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Baker's Cart

Fig. 3 - Jean Michelin (French, ca. 1616–1670). The Baker's Cart, 1656. Oil on canvas; 98.4 x 125.4 cm (38 3/4 x 49 3/8 in). New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 27.59. Fletcher Fund, 1927. Source: The Metropolitan Museum of Art


Historical Context

Wikipedia: 1650-1659

Europe, 1650. Source: Pinterest

  • 1651 – Laws are passed in Massachusetts, forbidding poor people from adopting excessive styles of dress.
  • 1652 – Rhode Island passes the first law in North America making slavery illegal.
  • 1659 – Diego Velázquez’s portrait of Infanta Maria Theresa is first exhibited.
  • Primary/Period Sources

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