Derick Berck of Cologne

Hans Holbein the Younger German

Not on view

This painting belongs to a group of portraits Hans Holbein made for the German merchants of the Hanseatic League in London (see also his Portrait of a Member of the Wedigh Family nearby). The bearded, thirty-year-old sitter is identified by the letter in his hand, which is addressed "To the honorable and pious Derick Berck, London, at the Steelyard [. . .]." The other inscription on the cartellino refers to a passage from Virgil’s Aeneid that reads, "[Perchance even this distress] will someday be a joy to recall." Exhorting perseverance, this statement might have been the sitter’s personal motto.

Derick Berck of Cologne, Hans Holbein the Younger (German, Augsburg 1497/98–1543 London), Oil on canvas, transferred from wood

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