Wilhelm [von] Bode. Studien zur Geschichte der holländischen Malerei. Braunschweig, 1883, pp. 49–50, 85, no. 75, attributes it to Hals and dates it several years before 1616; as in the Cocret collection, Paris.
Wilhelm von Bode. Letter to Mr. Kleinberger. March 24, 1907, affirms his attribution to Hals.
Wilhelm R. Valentiner. The Hudson-Fulton Celebration: Catalogue of an Exhibition Held in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1909, vol. 1, p. 146, no. 22A, ill. opp. p. 146, dates it about 1615 and notes that there is a copy of the composition by Dirck Hals in the Musée du Louvre, Paris.
E[rnst]. W[ilhelm]. Moes. Frans Hals, sa vie et son œuvre. Brussels, 1909, pp. 25–26, 109, no. 208, ill. opp. p. 18, as "Scène de mœurs"; states that Schmidt-Degener told him he dates it about 1625; identifies one of the male figures as Yonker Ramp.
Kurt Erasmus. "Ein Frühwerk von Frans Hals." Der Cicerone 1, no. 2 (1909), pp. 51–54, argues that it is a forgery after the central group in the "Fête champêtre" by Dirck Hals (Musée du Louvre, Paris).
W[ilhelm]. [von] Bode. "Ein Frühwerk von Frans Hals." Der Cicerone 1, no. 4 (1909), pp. 128–30, ill., rejects Erasmus's argument [see Ref. 1909].
Kurt Erasmus. "Nochmals das 'Frühwerk von Frans Hals'." Der Cicerone 1, no. 10 (1909), pp. 325–27, repeats and amplifies his argument that this picture is a forgery made after Dirck Hals's picture in the Louvre.
"editors' response to Ref. Erasmus 1909." Der Cicerone 1, no. 10 (1909), p. 327, remark that both they and Bode are convinced of this painting's authenticity.
Cornelis Hofstede de Groot. A Catalogue Raisonné of the Works of the Most Eminent Dutch Painters of the Seventeenth Century. 3, London, 1910, p. 42, no. 141.
E[mil]. Waldmann. "Die Ausstellung Holländischer Gemälde des 17. Jahrhunderts in New York." Zeitschrift für bildende Kunst, n.s., 21, no. 4 (1910), pp. 77–78.
Kenyon Cox. "Dutch Pictures in The Hudson-Fulton Exhibition—II." Burlington Magazine 16 (January 1910), p. 245.
William Bode. "More Spurious Pictures Abroad Than in America." New York Times (December 31, 1911), p. SM4.
Handbook of the Benjamin Altman Collection. New York, 1914, pp. 30–32, no. 21, pp. 34–35, under no. 23, ill. opp. p. 30.
Frans Hals, His Life and Work. Berlin, 1914, vol. 1, pp. 19–20, 25, no. 1, pl. 1, Binder dates it to the early 1620s; he states that the man at right also appears in "Married Couple in a Garden" (Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam) and in the oval portrait of a standing man (Duke of Devonshire) and suggests identifying him as Dirck Hals.
J. O. Kronig. "Een portret door Hendrick Gerritsz. Pot." Oude Kunst 3 (October 1917–September 1918), p. 83, calls Pot's "Temptresses" (Museum Boijmans-van Beuningen, Rotterdam) a not unworthy counterpart to this picture.
Wilhelm R. Valentiner. "Amerikanische Privatsammlungen." Kunst und Künstler 18 (1920), p. 356, ill. p. 355.
François Monod. "La Galerie Altman au Metropolitan Museum de New-York (2e article)." Gazette des beaux-arts, 5th ser., 8 (November 1923), pp. 300–302, attributes it entirely or partly to an artist in Hals's circle rather than to Hals himself; states that the central male figure also appears in "The Merry Trio" (lost; copy formerly in the Kaiser-Friedrich Museum, Berlin [destroyed]), as the figure in the painting on the easel in "Young Painter" (Musée du Louvre, Paris), and in Dirck Hals's "Musical Party" (Michaelis collection, Capetown).
Wilhelm R. Valentiner. Frans Hals, des meisters Gemälde. 2nd ed. Stuttgart, 1923, p. 306, ill. p. 12, dates it about 1616–20; identifies it with a "Fassnacht" [Shrove Tuesday] included in an auction in Amsterdam on June 5, 1765; states that the background of the composition originally included six heads, which have been overpainted but are revealed in two copies after the painting: a drawing by Van den Berghe (now Institut Néerlandais, Fondation Custodia, Frits Lugt Collection, Paris) and a painting (S. Borchard, New York; later H. Metzger, New York); agrees [see Ref. Bode and Binder 1914] that the man at right also appears in the double portrait in the Rijksmuseum and in the portrait belonging to the duke of Devonshire, and suggests that he may be the artist himself.
W. R. Valentiner. "The Self Portraits of Frans Hals." Art in America 13 (April 1925), pp. 152–54, repeats his argument that the man at right appears in several other paintings and is a self-portrait.
W. Martin. "Buytewech, Rembrandt en Frans Hals." Oud-Holland 42 (1925), pp. 50–51, fig. 4, states that this painting, which he dates before 1616, was influenced by a lost "Musical Company" by Buytewech, of which he reproduces an old copy (fig. 3).
Georg Poensgen. "Beiträge zur Kunst des Willem Buytewech." Jahrbuch der preuszischen Kunstsammlungen 47 (1926), p. 96, dates it about 1616–17, along with two drawings (Institut Néerlandais, Fondation Custodia, Frits Lugt Collection, Paris) by Buytewech after the heads of the main male figures.
Handbook of the Benjamin Altman Collection. 2nd ed. New York, 1928, p. 63, under no. 29, pp. 89–92, no. 50, ill. opp. p. 90.
W. R. Valentiner. "Rediscovered Paintings by Frans Hals." Art in America 16 (October 1928), p. 237, calls the work mentioned by Hofstede de Groot [see Ref. 1928] a sketch for this painting.
C[ornelis]. Hofstede de Groot. "Frans Hals as a Genre Painter." Art News 26 (April 14, 1928), p. 45, notes that he recently saw in Ireland a "smaller, sketchy version" of this work which included the row of background heads (now Dienst voor 's-Rijks Verspreide Kunstvoorwerpen, The Hague).
Hans Schneider and W. G. Constable in Exhibition of Dutch Art, 1450–1900. Exh. cat., Royal Academy of Arts. London, 1929, p. 33, under no. 48.
Franz Dülberg. Frans Hals: Ein Leben und ein Werk. Stuttgart, 1930, pp. 48, 52, 54, pl. 13, dates it about 1615–20; states that the female figure also appears in "Young Man and Woman in an Inn" (MMA, 14.40.602), in "The Merry Trio" formerly in Berlin, and possibly in the "Married Couple" in Amsterdam.
Tancred Borenius. "'A Merry Company at Table' by Frans Hals." Pantheon 6 (December 1930), p. 572, states that the version noted by Hofstede de Groot [see Ref. 1928] "is of particular interest in showing us the master's own conception of the group in its entirety".
Hans Kauffmann. "Overzicht der Litteratuur betreffende Nederlandsche Kunst." Oud-Holland 48 (1931), p. 228, based on the altered style of the woman's dress in the version in The Hague [see Ref. Hofstede de Groot 1928], calls that work a later variant of this painting.
W[ilhelm]. Martin. "Frans Hals en Zijn Tijd." De Hollandsche Schilderkunst in de zeventiende Eeuw. 1, Amsterdam, , pp. 352, 449 n. 477, pl. 204, dates it about 1617.
W. R. Valentiner. "New Additions to the Work of Frans Hals." Art in America 23 (June 1935), pp. 90, 95–96.
W. R. Valentiner. Frans Hals Paintings in America. Westport, Conn., 1936, p. 9, no. 3, ill. [cat. section unpaginated], dates it about 1616–17.
Eduard Plietzsch. Frans Hals. Burg bei Magdeburg, 1940, pp. 7, 14, ill. p. 20, dates it about 1617.
N. S. Trivas. The Paintings of Frans Hals. New York, 1941, p. 26, under no. 9.
Millia Davenport. The Book of Costume. New York, 1948, vol. 2, p. 609, no. 1602, ill.
Dirk Bax. Ontcijfering van Jeroen Bosch. The Hague, 1949, pp. 144–46 n. 35, pp. 176–77, 180 n. 11, p. 226 [English ed., Hieronymus Bosch: His Picture-writing Deciphered, Rotterdam, 1979, pp. 191–92 n. 35, pp. 193, 229–30, 301].
E. Haverkamp Begemann. Willem Buytewech. Amsterdam, 1959, pp. 22, 58, 62, 96–99, fig. 26, calls it "Vastenavondsgasten" [Shrovetide Revellers], following the inscription on the back of Van den Bergh's drawing.
Seymour Slive. "On the Meaning of Frans Hals' 'Malle Babbe'." Burlington Magazine 105 (October 1963), p. 436, notes that the subject is the celebration of Shrovetide, a holiday "traditionally dedicated to fools and foolishness"; adds that the old copies of the work suggest that it has been cut down on all four sides.
H. van Hall. Portretten van nederlandse beeldende Kunstenaars. Amsterdam, 1963, p. 125, no. 1 under Frans Hals, calls the man at right a self-portrait.
Albert P. de Mirimonde. Letter. March 20, 1965, notes that the bagpipes are an allusion to a risqué Flemish proverb.
J[ohan]. Q[uirijn]. van Regteren Altena. "Jan van den Bergh te Antwerpen." Oud Holland 80, no. 4 (1965), p. 238, notes that two figures in a kitchen scene attributed to Frans Snyders and Jan van den Bergh (sold, Paris, 1964) derive from this work, which he dates before 1620 (the latest date at which Van den Bergh could have moved from Haarlem to Antwerp).
Jakob Rosenberg and Seymour Slive in Dutch Art and Architecture: 1600 to 1800. Baltimore, 1966, pp. 31, 36, pl. 10B, date it about 1615–17.
Pierre Descargues. Hals. Geneva, 1968, p. 18, mentions it as a work that might have influenced Hals's pupil Adriaen Brouwer.
Calvin Tomkins. Merchants and Masterpieces: The Story of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1970, pp. 172–73 [rev., enl. ed., 1989].
Seymour Slive. "Text." Frans Hals. 1, London, 1970, pp. 7, 33–37, 58, 67, 80, 94, 96, 152, identifies the man at left as "Peeckelhaering" and the one at right as "Hans Wurst", stock figures in contemporary Dutch farces; suggests that the central figure might be a young male actor dressed as a woman; discusses the symbolism of the food and other objects in the picture.
Seymour Slive. "Plates." Frans Hals. 2, London, 1970, pls. 7–11 (overall and details), dates it about 1615.
Francis Haskell. "The Benjamin Altman Bequest." Metropolitan Museum Journal 3 (1971), pp. 264–65, fig. 10 (Altman gallery installation).
Claus Grimm. Frans Hals: Entwicklung, Werkanalyse, Gesamtkatalog. Berlin, 1972, pp. 29, 41, 50–52, 199, no. A4, calls it a copy after Hals and dates it about 1617.
Eduard Plietzsch. Holländische und flämische Maler des XVII. Jahrh. 2nd ed. Leipzig, 1972, pp. 23, 26.
Jakob Rosenberg and Seymour Slive in Dutch Art and Architecture: 1600 to 1800. rev. ed. Harmondsworth, England, 1972, pp. 48, 57, fig. 20, date it about 1615.
Seymour Slive. "Catalogue." Frans Hals. 3, London, 1974, pp. 3–4, 116–17, no. 5, fig. 53 (monogram), tentatively connects it with the picture included in the 1765 sale in Amsterdam; discusses numerous related works; rejects the identification of the figure at right as either Frans Hals, Dirck Hals, or the man in the Amsterdam double portrait.
E. C. Montagni in L'opera completa di Frans Hals. Milan, 1974, p. 87, under no. 10, fig. 10a.
Violette de Mazia. "Creative Distortion IV: Portraiture II." Barnes Foundation Journal of the Art Department 5 (Spring 1974), p. 12, pl. 24.
A. W. F. M. Meij et al. Willem Buytewech, 1591–1624. Exh. cat., Institut Néerlandais. Paris, 1975, pp. 27–29 n. 1.
Sylvia Hochfield. "Conservation: The Need is Urgent." Art News 75 (February 1976), p. 27, ill. (before and after cleaning).
Herbert Wiesner. Master Painters of Holland: Dutch Painting in the Seventeenth Century. New York, 1976, p. 6.
Howard Hibbard. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1980, pp. 318, 332, fig. 570 (color).
H. P. Baard. Frans Hals. New York, 1981, p. 72, figs. 54–55 (details) and colorpl. 5, dates it about 1615.
B. A. Stanton-Hirst. "Pieter Quast and the Theatre." Oud Holland 96, no. 4 (1982), pp. 223, 225.
Reflets du siècle d'or: tableaux hollandais du dix-septième siècle. Exh. cat., Institut Néerlandais. Paris, 1983, pp. 57–58, dates it before 1617; notes a variant of the composition in the Narodní Galerie, Prague.
Peter C. Sutton in Masters of Seventeenth-Century Dutch Genre Painting. Exh. cat., Philadelphia Museum of Art. Philadelphia, 1984, p. XXXIV, fig. 38, dates it about 1615.
Peter C. Sutton. A Guide to Dutch Art in America. Grand Rapids, Mich., 1986, pp. 185–86, colorpl. 6.
Seymour Slive in Frans Hals. Exh. cat., National Gallery of Art, Washington. London, 1989, pp. 1, 148, 166, 216, colorpl. II.
Norbert Middelkoop and Anne van Grevenstein. Frans Hals: Life, Work, Restoration. Amsterdam, 1989, p. 17, fig. d.
Walter Liedtke. "Dutch Paintings in America: The Collectors and Their Ideals." Great Dutch Paintings from America. Exh. cat., Mauritshuis, The Hague. Zwolle, The Netherlands, 1990, p. 48, fig. 37 (Altman gallery installation).
Claus Grimm. Frans Hals: The Complete Work. New York, 1990, pp. 50–51, 56, 118, 221, 236, 291–92, no. C1, colorpls. 73, 74a (overall and detail), fig. 124b (detail) [German ed., "Frans Hals: Das Gesamtwerk," Stuttgart, 1989, pp. 50–51, 56, 117, 220–21, 236, 284–85, no. K1, colorpls. 73, 74a, fig. 124b], dates it about 1616.
Peter [C.] Sutton. "Washington and London: Frans Hals." Burlington Magazine 132 (January 1990), pp. 67, 70.
Peter C. Sutton in Rembrandt och hans Tid: Människan i Centrum. Exh. cat., Nationalmuseum. Stockholm, 1992, p. 86 n. 5.
Christiane Stukenbrock Universität Köln. Frans Hals—Fröhliche Kinder, Musikanten und Zecher: Eine Studie zu ausgewählten Motivgruppen und deren Rezeptionsgeschichte. Frankfurt am Main, 1993, p. 153.
Cynthia Kortenhorst-von Bogendorf Rupprath in Judith Leyster: A Dutch Master and Her World. Exh. cat., Worcester Art Museum. Zwolle, The Netherlands, 1993, p. 152, fig. 5d.
J. Bruyn in Dawn of the Golden Age: Northern Netherlandish Art, 1580–1620. Exh. cat., Rijksmuseum. Amsterdam, 1993, p. 118, fig. 9.
Seymour Slive. Dutch Painting 1600–1800. New Haven, 1995, pp. 28–29, 37, 125, fig. 27.
Mariët Westermann. The Amusements of Jan Steen: Comic Painting in the Seventeenth Century. Zwolle, The Netherlands, 1997, p. 248 n. 88.
Eddy de Jongh in Mirror of Everyday Life: Genreprints in the Netherlands 1550–1700. Exh. cat., Rijksmuseum. Amsterdam, 1997, pp. 363–64 n. 11, fig. 6.
Rüdiger Klessmann. Johann Liss: A Monograph and Catalogue Raisonné. Doornspijk, The Netherlands, 1999, pp. 26, 28, fig. 6, dates it 1615–16.
Bernhard Schnackenburg in The Mystery of the Young Rembrandt. Exh. cat., Staatliche Museen Kassel. Wolfratshausen, Germany, 2001, pp. 101, 119 n. 53, fig. 8 (color).
E. de Jongh. "'Hangt dan der mannen eer nu aan der vrouwen aars?'." Kunstschrift 45, no. 4 (2001), p. 22, fig. 34 (color, overall and detail).
Dennis P. Weller in Jan Miense Molenaer: Painter of the Dutch Golden Age. Exh. cat., North Carolina Museum of Art. Raleigh, 2002, p. 11, fig. 3.
Epco Runia in Dutch and Flemish Old Masters from the Kremer Collection. n.p., 2002, p. 27, under no. 3.
Alejandro Vergara. Vermeer y el interior holandés. Exh. cat., Museo Nacional del Prado. Madrid, 2003, pp. 23, 203, fig. 13 (color), dates it about 1615.
Britta Nehlsen-Marten. Dirck Hals, 1591–1656: Œuvre und Entwicklung eines Haarlemer Genremalers. Weimar, 2003, pp. 107–8, fig. 85, dates it about 1617; incorrectly as oil on wood.
Pieter Biesboer in Satire en vermaak. Exh. cat., Frans Hals Museum, Haarlem. Zwolle, The Netherlands, 2003, pp. 180, 184 [German ed., "Von Frans Hals bis Jan Steen: vergnügliches Leben, verborgene Lust," Stuttgart, 2004], compares the figure of Peeckelhaering in two pictures by Hendrick Pot (private collection, and Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam).
Cynthia von Bogendorf Rupprath in Satire en vermaak. Exh. cat., Frans Hals Museum, Haarlem. Zwolle, The Netherlands, 2003, pp. 78, 88, 153 n. 11, fig. 9.1 (detail), colorpl. 31 [German ed., "Von Frans Hals bis Jan Steen: vergnügliches Leben, verborgene Lust," Stuttgart, 2004], notes the adaptation of the man to the left (Peeckelhaering) for a figure in Buytewech's "Merry Company" (Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam).
Martina Sitt in Satire en vermaak. Exh. cat., Frans Hals Museum, Haarlem. Zwolle, The Netherlands, 2003, p. 102 [German ed., "Von Frans Hals bis Jan Steen: vergnügliches Leben, verborgene Lust," Stuttgart, 2004], sees the man to the left (Peeckelhaering) as the model for the servant in Dirck Hals and Dirck van Delen's "Merry Company in a Palace Interior" (private collection) of 1628.
Everhard Korthals Altes. De verovering van de internationale kunstmarkt door de zeventiende-eeuwse schilderkunst: enkele studies over de verspreiding van Hollandse schilderijen in de eerste helft van de achttiende eeuw. Leiden, 2003, p. 67 n. 42.
Wayne Franits. Dutch Seventeenth-Century Genre Painting: Its Stylistic and Thematic Evolution. New Haven, 2004, p. 263 n. 24.
Jeroen Giltaij in Senses and Sins: Dutch Painters of Daily Life in the Seventeenth Century. Exh. cat., Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. Ostfildern-Ruit, Germany, 2004, pp. 14, 47.
Mirjam Neumeister in Senses and Sins: Dutch Painters of Daily Life in the Seventeenth Century. Exh. cat., Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. Ostfildern-Ruit, Germany, 2004, p. 52, fig. 1.
Mirjam Neumeister. "Künstler geboren bis 1615." Holländische Gemälde im Städel 1550–1800. 1, Petersberg, Germany, 2005, p. 141, fig. 120.
Elmer Kolfin. The Young Gentry at Play: Northern Netherlandish Scenes of Merry Companies, 1610–1645. Leiden, 2005, pp. 147, 270 n. 19, fig. 126.
Esmée Quodbach. "The Age of Rembrandt: Dutch Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 65 (Summer 2007), pp. 31–32, 35, 70, fig. 31 (Altman gallery photograph).
Walter Liedtke. Dutch Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2007, vol. 1, pp. ix–x, 250–60, 262, 266, no. 58, colorpl. 58, fig. 71 (color detail); vol. 2, pp. 841, 844, 846, 988, as probably painted about 1616–17.
Dagmar Hirschfelder. Tronie und Porträt in der niederländischen Malerei des 17. Jahrhunderts. Berlin, 2008, pp. 77, 79, 410, no. 199, pl. 41.