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Peter Gillis

Quinten Massijs
47 cm x 61.4 cm
Inventory number: 
Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp
Category B: Southern Low Countries
16th century Portraits

The scholar, turning to the left, in black gown, trimmed in sable, sits before his work table, on which in addition to a red, bound book, there is an hour glass. On the book, one can read, IS.ERAS(mus) R(otterdamiensis). A reminder that this portrait is found in the collection of Lord Radnor of Longford-Castle at Salisbury and represents Peter Gillis (Latin: Petrus Aegidius) 1486-1533, the State Secretary of Antwerp and friend of Massijs, Erasmus and Thomas Morus. The original, by order of Erasmus, was painted in 1517, at the same time of the portrait of Erasmus himself to be given as a gift to Morus. The latter work is found in Rome in the Palazzo Baberini (formerly in the Stroganoff collection, in the Corsini Gallery). A good replica is found in the Musée du Petit Palais in Paris (formerly in the Sedelmayer Collection).