Vertumnus and Pomona

Object Details


Vertumnus and Pomona


Attributed to Cesar van Everdingen (Dutch, about 1617 - 1678)




about 1650


Oil on canvas


104.1 × 140 cm (41 × 55 1/8 in.)

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Kneeling, a young woman turns away from the viewer to listen to an old woman whose open mouth and gesticulating hand indicate that she is in the midst of speech. The young woman wears a skirt and a sheer piece of cloth across her chest. With her face lost in profile, her naked neck, arms, and voluptuous breasts are displayed for the delectation of the male spectator. She holds a cluster of fruit in her right hand and a pruning knife in the other.

The subject of this painting comes from Ovid's Metamorphoses. The Roman God Vertumnus, disguised as the talkative old woman, attempts to seduce the reclusive woodland nymph Pomona. Netherlandish painters favored this classical story in the 1600s because of its moralizing lessons on the dangers of gullibility.

by 1904 - 1926

William Allan Coats, 1853 - 1926 (Skelmorlie Castle, Dalskairth, Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland), upon his death probably held in trust by the estate, 1926.

1926 - 1927

Estate of William Allan Coats, 1853 - 1926 [sold, Christie's, London, June 10, 1927, lot 103, to Duits for 105 guineas.]
Source: annotated auction catalogue (GRI): Christies, London. Pictures and Drawings of the British and Continental Schools: The Property of the late W.A. Coats, Esq. June 10, 1927

1927 -

W. E. Duits, Ltd. (London, England)

- 1935

Private Collection [sold, Mak van Waay, Amsterdam, December 16, 1935, lot 20.]

- 1960

Private Collection [sold, Sotheby's, London, November 16, 1960, lot 34, to Teltscher.]

1960 -

Teltscher (London, England)
Source: annotated auction catalog (GRI): Sotheby's, London. Catalogue of Old Master Paintings and Drawings. November 16, 1960

- 1964

Private Collection [sold, Dorotheum, Vienna, December 1, 1964, lot 34, to the Museo de Arte de Ponce.]

1964 -

Museo de Arte de Ponce (Ponce, Puerto Rico), sold to Central Picture Galleries.

- 1975

Central Picture Galleries (New York, New York), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1975.


A Catalogue of the French, Dutch, British and Other Schools belonging to W.A. Coats, Esq. (Glasgow: Wm. B. Paterson, 1904), no. xvi.

Christies, London. Catalogue of Ancient and Modern Pictures and Drawings of the British and Continental Schools: The Property of the Late W.A. Coats, Esq. June 10, 1927, p. 14, lot 103.

Mak van Waay, Amsterdam. Catalogus van de belangrijke [...] veiling van oude schilderijen [...]. December 16, 1935, p. 11, lot 20.

Sotheby's, London. Catalogue of Old Master Paintings and Drawings. November 16, 1960, p. 22, lot 131.

Dorotheum, Vienna. 566. Kunstauktion. Ölgemälde, Aquarelle, Miniaturen, Zeichnungen alter und neuerer Meister, Ikonen. December 1, 1964, p. 7, lot 34.

Held, Julius. Catalogue I: Paintings of the European and American Schools (Ponce: n.p., 1965), pp. 64-65, fig. 69.

Moltke, Joachim Wolfgang von. Govaert Flinck, 1615-1660 (Amsterdam: Menno Hertzberger & Co., 1965), pp. 233, 235, no. 44, ill.

Blankert, Albert. Ferdinand Bol (1616-1680): Rembrandt's Pupil (Doornspijk: Davaco, 1982), pp. 166-67, under no. R41.

Williams, Julia Lloyd. Dutch Art and Scotland: A Reflection of Taste, exh. cat. (Edinburgh: National Gallery of Scotland, 1992), p. 175.

Jaffé, David. Summary Catalogue of European Paintings in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997), p. 40, ill.

Janssen, Paul Huys. Caesar van Everdingen, 1616/17-1678: Monograph and Catalogue Raisonné. Diane L. Webb, trans. (Doornspijk: Davaco, 2002), pp. 17, 32, 110-11, cat. 52, fig. 6.

Sandell, Gösta. ed. Konst att se: Scener ur den Hallwylska målerisamlingen (Stockholm: Hallwylska museet, 2008), pp. 32-33, ill., entry by Bengt Kylsberg.