Skip to main content

David Teniers the Younger, Spring

Key facts
Full title Spring
Artist David Teniers the Younger
Artist dates 1610 - 1690
Series The Four Seasons
Date made about 1644
Medium and support Oil on copper
Dimensions 22.1 × 16.5 cm
Inscription summary Signed
Acquisition credit Bought, 1871
Inventory number NG857
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
Previous owners
David Teniers the Younger

This is the first of a series of paintings by David Teniers in which the four seasons are given human form. Here, Spring is personified as a young gardener with a bushy beard, heaving a heavy pot containing a sapling. His step is jaunty and he has a gleam in his eye. His jacket looks new, and his red waistcoat and cap with the feather warm up the otherwise chilly background.

Overhead, wispy grey clouds bear the signs of April showers to come, and the trees in the background are leafless and windblown. A figure in a long gown walks up the hill – perhaps it is Winter making way for Spring.

Other gardeners dig the soil. They appear to have traced a pattern in the earth to follow when planting new trees, making a formal garden in the fashionable style set by French designers and followed with keen interest in Flanders.

Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download a low-resolution copy of this image for personal use.

License this image

License and download a high-resolution image for reproductions up to A3 size from the National Gallery Picture Library.

License image
Download low-resolution image

This image is licensed for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons agreement.

Examples of non-commercial use are:

  • Research, private study, or for internal circulation within an educational organisation (such as a school, college or university)
  • Non-profit publications, personal websites, blogs, and social media

The image file is 800 pixels on the longest side.

As a charity, we depend upon the generosity of individuals to ensure the collection continues to engage and inspire. Help keep us free by making a donation today.

Download low-resolution image

You must agree to the Creative Commons terms and conditions to download this image.

Creative Commons Logo

The Four Seasons


This series of four small paintings is an allegory of the seasons: spring, summer, autumn and winter have been given human forms that embody the essence of each. Spring is a gardener carrying a tree to plant in a formal garden; Summer is a peasant tying up a sheaf of corn; Autumn is a drinker who raises a glass of wine; and Winter is an old man wearing a fur cap and mantle, warming himself near a brazier.

Strongly influenced early in his career by the Dutch artist Adriaen Brouwer, Teniers became the most famous painter of peasant life of his day, rivalling Brouwer’s rowdy, raunchy tavern scenes full of larger-than-life characters.