To Christiaan Huygens 'under construction'
Started Apr 19, 2008
Last Update June 20, 2008

Portraits of Constantijn Huygens (1596-1687).

As a companion site to the Portraits of Christiaan Huygens the same approach will followed. The first thing that strikes one when looking at the portraits of Constantijn Huygens is the shear number of them. One other thing to remember, is that one of the most distinguishing features of Constantijn Huygens is absent in his portraits: i.e. the fact that he had to wear glasses.

Portraits made during Constantijn's life time.

The number of portraits enables us to make distinctions based upon changes in clothing and hair style.

1622 self portrait (9 * 6.3 cm., silverpoint on parchement). Present location unknown.
Londini, Junis
On the back it contains the following lines:
Nemo Dissimilem proprio conamine vultum
Increper, heu! paucis adeo, quo aequus amavit
Juppiter, innotuisse ferunt GNWQI SEAUTWN

1625 (14 * 11.5 cm.) Michael Jzn. Mierevelt (1567-1641) / engraving W. van Delff (1580-1638).
The Aº Diii MDCXXV is inconsistent with the Aetat. XXVII suggesting that the original was painted around 1623. A smaller version (10 * 8 cm.) appeared in the first edition of the Otiorum libri XI published in 1625 by Arnold Meurs.

1626/7 (99 * 84 cm., oil on wood) Jan Lievens (1607-1674), Collection Musée de la Chartreuse, Douai on a long term loan to the Rijkmuseum, Amsterdam (signature: SK-C-1467).
Discovered in 1935. On April 5, 1632 Huygens writes the following poem:
Picturae nec lingua deest, ne fallere, nec vox;
Hugenii facies haec meditantis erat.
Si quaeras animam, spirantem quisque videbis,
Qui attuleris qualem Livius intuitum.
Note that this is within a month after he made three poems on the engraving by Pontius of the portrait by van Dijck.

1627 (92.4 * 69.3 cm., oil on wood) Thomas de Keyzer (1596/7-1667), The National Gallery, London.

1632/1645 (24.5 * 17.1 cm., engraving) painting A van Dijck (1599-1541, Ant. van dyck pinxit) / engraving by Paulus Pontius (1603-1658, Paul. Ponsius Sculp.).
The engraving is part of collection of portraits that was first issued in 1645 under the title Iconographia. The portraits however were of a much earlier date. On January 28, 1632 Huygens notes: 'Pingor a Van Dyckio, cum arbor in aedes lapsus esset'.
On March 11, 1632 Huygens wrote three poems:
Vivitur ingenio: servat cum vertice dextras
Dyckius, et, sunto caetera mortis, ait.

Hugenium illustres inter mirare? necesse
His umbris lucem quae daret umbra fuit.

Os aliquis frontem atque oculos imitarier aude
Dycki, nemo manum non imitabilem.

1632/1664 (10.0 * 9.2 cm., engraving (trimmed)) painting A van Dijck (1599-1541, A van Dyck pinxit.) / engraving by Richard Gaywood (1603-1658, R. Gaywood fecit 1664.). British Museum London

1635 (98 * 82 cm., oil on canvas) by Jacob van Campen (1595-1657). Mauritshuis, The Hague.

1639 (23.8 * 17.4 cm., Black chalk on paper) by Jan Lievens (1607-1674, IL). British Museum, London.

1639 (26 * 19 cm., engraving) drawing by Jan Lievens (1607-1674, Ioannes Livius delin.) / engraving by Lucas Vorsterman (1595?-1675?, Lucas Vorstermans sculpsit).
Nicolaes Heinsius wrote a four line poem:
Hic ille Auriacis Hugenius inclytus actis
Effigies patriae primaque fama suae
Omnibus hunc terris ostende batavia vultu**?
Qui toto vultus monstrat in orbe tuos
Nic: Heinsius, D. F.

1639/40, (206 * 174.5 cm, oil on canvas) of Constantijn Huygens and his children by Adriaen Hanneman (1604-1671). Mauritshuis, The Hague.
Formerly the boy on left of Constantijn sr was 'recognized' as Christiaan. However the place on the right of a father, which to the viewer is the left side, was traditionally reserved for the eldest son i.e. Constantijn jr.. This meant that the son on his left (his right side to the viewer) had to be Christiaan. The empty medallion at the bottom contains the text

1641 (72 * 57 cm., oil on canvas) Michael Jzn. Mierevelt (1567-1641). Museum Hofwijck, Voorburg.

1646 (58 * 74 cm., oil on panel) by Jan Mijtens (1614-1670). Musee des Beaux-Arts, Rennes.
This group portrait represents the wedding of princess Louise Henriette daughter of Frederick Hendrik (stadholder) and Frederick Willem van Brandenburg. The wedding was held in The Hague in the old palace. Huygens probably is among the persons depicted as he was involved in the proceedings as well as in drawing up the marriage contract. (OC 18a, November 26, 1646).

1647 (34.2 * 38.9 cm., engraving) by Adriaen Pietersz. van de Venne (1589-1662, pinxit) / engraving by Cornelis van Dalen (1602-1665, sculpsit). Dodelycke Uytgang van Syn Hoogheyt Fred. Hendrik Prince van Oranje. (on the banner above the scene). Constantijn Huygens is portrayed (as nr 15) at the left with a small boy hiding behind him.

1651 Medallion (58 * 38 cm, marble) by François Dieussart (). Gemeente Museum, The Hague; on loan in Museum Hofwijck, Voorburg.

1655 (9.5 * 7.5 cm, engraving) by Adriaen Hanneman? (1604-1671) / engraving by Jonas Suyderhoeff (1614-1686).
Appeared in the second edition of the Momenta desultoria; poëmatum libri XIV published in 1655 by Adriaen Vlacq. Van Gelder suggests that the orginal by Hanneman dates from 1648.

1657 (19.5 * 16 cm. engraving) drawing by Chr. Huygens (delineavit) / engraving by Cornelis Visscher (1629-1658, sculpsit).
Appeared in first edition the Koren-Bloemen published in 1658, edited by Christiaan Huygens.

1665 (44.7 * 33.2 cm.) Crispijn van de Passe.
Sinne-beeld. Ter eeren van Sijn Doorluchtighste Hoogheyt Willem de III. A second version was issued in which the painting of the Willem III was transformed into a painting symbolizing the seven provinces.

1672 (27 * 23 cm. oil) by Caspar Netscher (1639-1684), Rijkmuseum, Amsterdam (signature: SK-A-292 ); on long term loan to Museum Hofwijck, Voorburg.

1675? (23.3 * 35.6 cm. coloured drawing) by Frederik de Moucheron? (1633-1686), Museum Hofwijck, Voorburg. Both date (probably later?) and artist (another Moucheron?) seem to be lately in a state of flux.

1686 (34.5 * 25.7 cm. mezzotint) by Bernard Vaillant (1632-1698)/ Abraham Blooteling (1640-1690).
Huygens wrote on Februari 17, 1686 two poems:
Aut penicillo Pictor, aut Sculptor stilo
Exercet Artem, quâ sumus bis, qui sumus,
Et aere fuso vivimus perennius:
Nec Penicillo hic, nec Stilo, artifex nouus
(5) Idem peregit. ecce spirat ut loqui
Imago muta gestiat. quid relliquum est?
Nisi ut sinistrâ ac dextrâ mutili manu
Vel solâ agamus voce, vel nutu deos.

Hugenius Constantinus Zulichemius hic est:
Magna vides, Lector, nomina, rem nihili.

Posthumous representations.

1732 - 1771 (11 * 9.5 cm., oil on copper) by Jan Maurits Quinkhard (1688-1772) after Paulus Pontius, Rijkmuseum, Amsterdam (signature: SK-A-4570)

1817, (14 x 11 cm, engraving + etching) drawing by N.I.W.C.Heideloff (1761-1837)/etching and engraving by P.H.L. v.d. Meulen (1780-1850).
The print appeared in Peerlkamp's edition of Constantijn Huygens Sermones de Vita Propria. It copies the painting by Hanneman, that according to the text on the print, was by P. van Dijk. Numbers are added to the portraits of the children (1 top = Suzanne, 2 middle-left = Constantijn, 3 middle-right = Christiaan, 4 bottom-left = Lodewijk, 5 bottom-right = Philips). A poem by Constantijn Huygens dated Jan 3, 1641 is added.
Quo genus et formam Constanter, opesque et amoris
Imtempestivi spernat ubique faces,
Hugenium divâ privatum Conjuge Patrem
Hoc armaverunt Fata satellitio
See OC XXII pp. 395-396, for a discussion about the identification of Christiaan in the Hanneman painting. In OC XXII p. 396 it is suggested that the poem is by Constantijn jr. This seems to be in conflict with the poem's title In Effigiem Meam Quinque Liberorum Vultibus Cinctam that is omitted on the print.
Source: collection G.M. Duijvestein, Voorburg.

1840, (15 x 18 cm, lithography) by F.B Waanders (1809-1880) / lithography by C.M. Mensing.
Taken from the first volume of the the art journal 'De Kunstkronyk' (1840-1841). It copies the painting by Hanneman, that according to the text on the print, was at that time attributed to A. van Dijk. See also entry 1817.
Source: collection G.M. Duijvestein, Voorburg.

1897 (h? * b? cm., bronze (statue) and stone (base)) by A.W.M. Od? (1865-1955). Signed: "A.W.M. Odé jnv.". Was originally located at the corner of the Scheveningseweg and the Verhuëllweg (now professor B.M. Teldersweg). Was removed during WWII and was in June 1953 relocated to the Ary van der Spuyweg in The Hague.
Inscription at the front of the base.

1928 J. H. Isings (), Een zomermiddag met de Muiderkring (1628)
Huygens' head seems to be derived from the 1625 Mierevelt portrait with a little goattee from the 1627 Thomas de Keyzer portrait. The collar seems to be incorrect, as this type was not yet around in 1628.

1996, (h? * b?, bronze) by Hans Bayens (1924-2003). Constantijn en Christiaan Huygens. Park Vreugd en Rust. Voorburg.
To commemorate the tricentenary of Christiaan's death (1695) and the quadricentenary of Constantijn sr's birth (1596), in Voorburg a foundation was formed. It was this foundation that commissioned this National Huygens monument. Afterwards it also instituted the annual 'Christiaan Huygens Award'.

1996, (33 mm, silver) by Willem J. Vis (fish beneath '87' obverse).
To commemorate the quadricentenary of Constantijn sr's birth (1596) a silver 20 Euro coin was issued. It shows Huygens (based on the 1641 Mierevelt painting) with a goose quill and a musical key refering to his literary and musical talents, the country estate Hofwijck and a ship that is copied after 'de Zeven Provinci?n' the flagship of Michiel de Ruyter. The ship alludes both to Huygens diplomatic travels and to 'Het schip van Staat' as mentioned in Huygen's Scheepspraet. Huygens coins of 5, 10, 50 and 100 Euro were also issued.