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Boy with a Birdcage

Photo credit: National Trust Images

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This type of 'niche' picture was popular in Holland in the mid-seventeenth century. It shows a boy leaning over an arched stone balcony holding a bird cage and offering up a glass of water. His mischievous look suggests he may be about to release the prisoner. On the ledge are children’s toys (a spinning top and clackers made from bone), and his yellow and blue feathered hat projects into the world of the viewer. Inscribed on the stone plaque on the window ledge wall is 'Anno.16.65', referring to the year the painting was made, when the artist was living in The Hague.

National Trust, Knightshayes Court





oil on panel


H 21 x W 16.5 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

bequeathed by Joyce, Lady Heathcoat Amory, 1997

Work type



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Normally on display at

National Trust, Knightshayes Court

Bolham, Tiverton, Devon EX16 7RQ England

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