A work by Flemish painter Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) has been formally identified in The Hague. Nearly 400 years after its creation, the sketch of “The Secular Hierarchy in Adoration”, the tapestry created by the Baroque master was authenticated using infrared photographs.
Seventeen of the oil sketches made for the series of twenty tapestries were already known. This one can now be considered as the eighteenth. This is a key element of the series, since it portrays four leading figures from early 17th century Europe: Roman Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637) kneeling before Christ. Also kneeling behind him are King Philip IV of Spain (1605-1665), his wife Elisabeth of France (1603-1644) and, in a monastic habit, the sponsor of the series: the sovereign of the Netherlands, Isabella of Spain (1566-1633).
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