Skip to main content
Portrait of a Young Man
Gerard ter Borch
/

In the early 1660s, when this portrait was made, this fancy outfit, bedecked with ruffles, ribbons and lace, was the height of sophisticated dressing, inspired by the latest fashions in Paris and employing the most expensive fabrics and tailoring.

We don’t know who the sitter is, though it seems almost certain that he was a wealthy burgher from the Dutch town of Deventer where ter Borch had settled in 1654. He was certainly a man of status, upright and conscious of demonstrating his social and financial status.

And he was apparently not afraid to alienate some of his more conservative contemporaries. Such ostentatious dressing was not universally approved of in the Netherlands at the time. Stricter Calvinists (who followed Calvinism, a branch of Protestantism) would certainly have raised their eyebrows at what one contemporary writer referred to as ‘immoderately loose and long garments… redolent of over-abundance and profligacy’.

Key facts
Artist Gerard ter Borch
Artist dates 1617 - 1681
Full title Portrait of a Young Man
Date made about 1663
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 67.3 x 54.3 cm
Acquisition credit Bought, 1894
Inventory number NG1399
Location in Gallery Not on display
Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download an 800px wide, 72dpi copy of this image.

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.

Yes, I'd like to donate
Or
Download low resolution image

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

Creative Commons Logo