Gerard ter Borch the Younger - The Music Lesson, about 1668

Workshop of Gerard ter Borch the Younger (Zwolle, Netherlands, 1617 - 1681, Deventer, Netherlands)

The Music Lesson, about 1668

Oil on canvas, 66.2 x 52.4 cm (26 1/16 x 20 5/8 in.) canvas


Object details

Accession number



Sold in 1753 by the dealer Pieter Ietswaart, Rotterdam to Jan (d.1758) and Pieter Bisschop (d.1771), Rotterdam.
Acquired in 1771 by Adriaen Hope (?) (d.1781) and his nephew Jan Hope (1737-1784), Amsterdam.
Inherited by Henry Philip Hope (1774-1839) and Adrian Elias Hope (1772-1834), sons of Jan Hope given joint ownership by inheritance from their father. Since both were under age, they were under the guardianship of their mother, Philippina Barbera van der Hoeven (d. 1790), and on her death, their father's nephew, Henry Hope (c.1739-1811).
Henry Hope moved the collection to London before 1794.
Henry Philip Hope became the sole owner, but the collection was under the care of his eldest brother, Thomas Hope (1769-1831), in the gallery at his Duchess Street house, London in 1819/20.
Henry Thomas Hope (1808-1862), son of Thomas, by inheritance from his uncle Henry Philip. Transferred the Duchess Street collection to The Deepdene, near Dorking, Surrey in 1849.
Inherited by the widow of Henry Thomas Hope, Adèle Bichat Hope (d.1887).
Inherited by Henry Francis Pelham-Clinton-Hope (d.1941), grandson of Adèle Bichat Hope and 8th Duke of Newcastle, in 1884.
Purchased by the dealers Asher Wertheimer and Colnaghi & Co. from Henry Francis Pelham-Clinton-Hope in 1898.
Purchased by Isabella Stewart Gardner from Colnaghi & Co. through Bernard Berenson, for £11,000 in September 1898 (as by Ter Borch).


Monogram (on footwarmer, lower left): GTB [addition of later date]


Catalogue. Fenway Court. (Boston, 1903), p. 15. (as "Music Lesson" as by Gerard Terburg)
Cornelis Hofstede de Groot. Catalogue of Dutch Painters V (trans., London, 1913), Ter Borch, no. 126.
Morris Carter. Isabella Stewart Gardner and Fenway Court (Boston, 1925; Reprint, Boston, 1972), p. 170.
Philip Hendy. Catalogue of the Exhibited Paintings and Drawings (Boston, 1931), pp. 353-55, ill.
Gilbert Wendel Longstreet and Morris Carter. General Catalogue (Boston, 1935), p. 187 (as Ter Borch).
James W. Howard, Jr. "Rembrandt van Rijn: The Storm on the Sea of Galilee." Fenway Court (1970), p. 33.
S. J. Gudlaugsson. Gerard Ter Borch (The Hague, 1960), pp. 203-04, no. 221a (as workshop of Ter Borch).
Philip Hendy. European and American Paintings in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (Boston, 1974), pp. 33-34, ill., pl. XXXII.
Rollin van N. Hadley (ed.). The Letters of Bernard Berenson and Isabella Stewart Gardner 1887-1924 (Boston, 1987), pp. 147, 149-50, 152-53, 155-56, 159, 328.
Harry Mount (ed.). Sir Joshua Reynolds. A Journey to Flanders and Holland (Cambridge, 1996; originally published in the Works of Sir Joshua Reynolds, 1797), pp. 97, 170 n.478 (as by Gerard Terburg)
Sotheby's. Old Master Paintings (London, 3 July 1997), pp. 20-23, under no. 7 (sale of the prime version of the picture).
Alan Chong et al. (eds.) Eye of the Beholder: Masterpieces from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (Boston, 2003), p. 131.
Cynthia Saltzman. Old Masters, New World: America’s Raid on Europe’s Great Pictures (New York: Penguin Books, 2008), p. 82.

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Isabella Stewart Gardner kept meticulous records of many of her acquisitions. In keeping with this legacy, object information is continually being reviewed, updated, and enriched in order to give greater access to the collection.


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