Otto van Veen

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Otto van Veen
In medio consistit virtus
Brush and white opaque watercolor, and pen and brown ink; on a paper prepared with a brown ground of lead white tinted with yellow-brown ochre and a little red in oil medium.
7 3/16 x 5 3/4 inches (182 x 147 mm)
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1909.
Van Veen Album, folio 5

Watermark: since the drawings are laid down, no watermarks, if any, are visible, even with fiber-optic light.
Engraved in reverse, 1607.
Also see records on Van Veen Album (III, 146-157).


Inscribed by the artist, within the design below the three figures of the composition, in brown ink, "Prodigalitas, Liberalitas, Auaritia". On the album page below the design in another hand, in brown ink, "In medio consistit virtus (title) / Virtús est mediúm vitiorúm in útrimque reductum" (Virtue is a mean between vices, remote from both extremes). The text is from Horace, "Epistles", Book I, 18, line 9.

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.

Stampfle, Felice, with the assistance of Ruth S. Kraemer and Jane Shoaf Turner. Netherlandish Drawings of the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries and Flemish Drawings of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries in the Pierpont Morgan Library. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1991, p. 70, no. 117.

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