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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.
oil on panel
H 21 x W 16.5 cm
bequeathed by Joyce, Lady Heathcoat Amory, 1997