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Ludolf de Jongh (Rotterdam 1616-Hillegersberg 1679)

A formal Garden: three Ladies surprised by a Gentleman c.1676

RCIN 400596

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This kind of country house, built in the classical style and with a rectilinear formal garden, became fashionable in the later years of the seventeenth century as Dutch merchants aped the manners of the French aristocracy. The gentleman here starts forward so abruptly his hat falls off; but is he protecting the three ladies or stealing up on them?