In the present work, a young boy and his mother, who holds a nursing baby in one arm and the hand of her other child with the other, timidly approach the large doorway of a grand canal-house. The young boy holds his hat out before him as he tentatively steps into a pristine and brightly lit entrance way. He is greeted there by the barks of a small dog seen in the lower left as well as by a seated young woman, adorned in rich and elaborate fabrics, who reaches forward to place alms into the boy’s hat. Of the ten other pictures in this comparable group, three depict street musicians at the doorway, six depict food sellers of meats and fruits, and one, not listed in Susan Kuretsky's 1976 monograph though today in the National Gallery of Art, D.C. (inv. no. 2015.68.1), also depicts beggars asking for alms.1
1. See S. Kuretsky, The Paintings of Jacob Ochtervelt (1634-1682), Oxford 1979, cat. nos. 16, 24, 41, 50, 51, 54, 55, 62, 103. The other painting depicting beggars by Ochtervelt also sold New York, Sotheby’s, 30 January 2014, lot 38.
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