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The young woman is presented as a shepherdess; she holds a type of shepherd's crook, although the material of her dress is too luxurious for a real shepherdess. Salomon de Bray's eclectic output included portraits, as well as religious subjects, histories and landscapes. Some of his half-length images of Old Testament figures have the presence of portraits, and in the past it has been suggested that this picture was intended to represent Ruth.
oil on panel
H 70.8 x W 56.5 cm
purchased with the assistance of the Friends of Bristol Art Gallery, 1961