Young Woman with a Lute

Artist: Johannes Vermeer (Dutch, Delft 1632–1675 Delft)

Date: ca. 1662–63

Medium: Oil on canvas

Dimensions: 20 1/4 x 18 in. (51.4 x 45.7 cm)

Classification: Paintings

Credit Line: Bequest of Collis P. Huntington, 1900

Accession Number: 25.110.24

Description


A young woman glances out of a window while tuning her lute. Open songbooks and a viola da gamba on the floor indicate that she is preparing for a duet. Wealthy young people in the Dutch Republic studied music as part of their education, and amateur concerts provided a welcome opportunity for flirtation. The map of Europe in the background reflects the contemporary decoration of Dutch homes, a sign of pride in the nation’s preeminence in navigation and cartography.

Related