Van Mieris executed a painting of the same subject in 1702, now in the Gemäldegalerie, Dresden. Van Mieris regularly repeated subjects throughout his career and produced works in various media. Albert J. Elen, writing in Master Drawings in 2012, divides Van Mieris's drawings into three groups: preliminary studies, mainly in black chalk, some on blue paper; finished drawings made for sale, mainly in black chalk on vellum; and documentary drawings which were rough sketches recording paintings he was working on.1
The present work clearly fits into the second category of finished drawings, and this is a fine large example of the artist's works of this type in black chalk on vellum.
We are grateful to Albert Elen for informing us about the provenance of the drawing, and for observing that the date of 1730 is in some ways surprising, as the related painting was already in Dresden by 1722.
1. 'Additions to Willem van Mieris's Rape of Luretia: An Example of the Artist's Working Methods', Master Drawings, vol. 50, no. 4 (2012), p. 533