Rembrandt (Rembrandt van Rijn) (Dutch, 16061669)
Oil on canvas; 55 1/4 x 45 1/4 in. (140.3 x 114.9 cm)
The Jules Bache Collection, 1949 (49.7.35)
The flag, the plume in the hat, and the tooled leather baldric (or sword-belt) indicate that the figure is an ensign in one of Amsterdam's civic guard companies. He has been identified, through a process of elimination, as Floris Soop (16041657), a wealthy bachelor who owned 140 paintings at the time of his death. Scholars have recently disputed the extent to which the portrait was painted by Rembrandt himself, a question complicated by its abraded and darkened condition. The picture has been well known since the eighteenth century, when it was owned by Sir Joshua Reynolds.