Middelburg is the capital of the province of Zeeland. The circumstances surrounding the event depicted in Van de Venne's painting are no longer known, but the salute being fired from the yacht of the Prince of Orange on the left (identifiable by the insignia on its tricolor flag) signifies the importance of the occasion. The festivities occur on a canal that has since been filled in and is now a road leading into town.
|Adriaen van de Venne (Dutch, 1589–1662),
Middelburg with the Departure of a Dignitary, 1615
oil on panel, 64 x 134 cm (26 3/16 x 52 3/4 in.), Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
|Contemporary photograph courtesy Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, The Hague|