Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn

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Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn
Two Indian Noblemen
ca. 1654-1656
Pen and brown ink and wash, with red chalk wash, yellow watercolor, white opaque watercolor, black chalk and scraping on Japanese paper.
7 1/2 x 9 3/16 inches (191 x 234 mm); Richardson mount: 9 5/16 x 11 1/8 inches (237 x 283 mm)
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1909.
I, 208

Watermark: none visible through lining with fiber optic light.
An album with 25 of Rembrandt's studies after Mughal miniatures was assembled in the first half of the 18th century by the English painter and collector Jonathan Richardson, Sr. Today at least 24 of these Richardson drawings, including Inv. nos. I, 207 and I, 208, are known; all are identified by the stamp of the collector's monogram, and all are executed on Japanese paper.
The archer has been identified as the famous general, statesman and scholar at the Mughal court Abd-al-Rahim Khan (1556-1627), known under the title Khan-i-Khanan. The nobleman on the left, who holds a falcon in his gloved right hand and the lure in his left, has been tentatively identified by as Khan Alem, who served from 1613 to 1619 as ambassador to the court of the Shah of Persia and who at one time was also chief falconer.


The old Richardson mount has been cut down, thereby eliminating the usual inscriptions, except for a tiny illegible fragment at the top of the verso.

Jonathan Richardson, Sr. (1665-1745), London (Lugt 2184; illegible fragment of his press mark on the verso of the mount; Lugt 2983-4); his sale, London, Mr. Cock, 22 January-8 February (actually Wednesday, 11 February), 1746-7 [sic], lot 70: "A book of Indian drawings, by Rembrandt, 25 in number;" Charles Rogers (1711-84), London (no mark; see Lugt 624-6); his sale, London, T. Philipe, 15-23 April 1799, lot 57: "Asiatic figures, by Rembrandt--one of them is presenting an arrow to the other, who carries an hawk on his arm-pen and bistre, with a tinge of red chalk wash-very fine"; Heneage Finch, 5th Earl of Aylesford (1786-1859), London and Packington Hall, Meriden, near Coventry, Warwickshire (Lugt 58); his sale, London, Christie's, 17-18 July 1893, lot 263: "Two Oriental Figures, in pen and ink, washed with colour. From the Richardson Coll." (to Fairfax Murray for £8.0.0); Charles Fairfax Murray (1849-1919), London and Florence; from whom purchased through Galerie Alexandre Imbert, Rome, in 1909 by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913), New York (no mark; see Lugt 1509); his son, J. P. Morgan, Jr. (1867-1943), New York.
Associated names: 

Richardson, Jonathan, 1665-1745, former owner.
Rogers, Charles, 1711-1784, former owner.
Aylesford, Heneage Finch, Earl of, 1786-1859, former owner.
Murray, Charles Fairfax, 1849-1919, former owner.
Morgan, J. Pierpont (John Pierpont), 1837-1913, former owner.


Collection J. Pierpont Morgan : Drawings by the Old Masters Formed by C. Fairfax Murray. London : Privately printed, 1905-1912, I, 208, repr.
Stampfle, Felice and Egbert Haverkamp-Begemann. Rembrandt Drawings from American Collections. Cambridge, MA: Fogg Art Museum; New York: Pierpont Morgan Library, 1960, no. 62, repr.
Stampfle, Felice. Rubens and Rembrandt in Their Century : Flemish and Dutch Drawings of the Seventeenth Century from The Pierpont Morgan Library. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1979, no. 76, repr.
Jane Shoaf Turner, with contributions by Felice Stampfle, Dutch Drawings in the Pierpont Morgan Library: Seventeenth to Nineteenth Centuries, New York, 2006, cat. no. 222.