Cuyp's painting commemorated the massing of the Dutch fleet in 1646. Under the command of the Prince of Orange, the ships had assembled in the waterways near Dordrecht in a final show of force prior to the advent of peace negotiations with Spain. The massive square tower of Dordrecht's main church, at left in the painting, still rises along the riverbank.
|Aelbert Cuyp (Dutch, 1620–1691), The Maas at Dordrecht, early 1650s
oil on canvas, 114.9 x 170.2 cm (45 1/4 x 67 in.), National Gallery of Art, Washington, Andrew W. Mellon Collection
|Contemporary photograph courtesy Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, The Hague|