ATTRIBUTED TO AERT ANTHONISZ. called VAN ANTUM

( Antwerp 1580 – 1620 Amsterdam )

Federico Spinola’s Failed Attempt to Break the Blockade of Dutch Ships at Sluis, May 26, 1603

Oil on canvas, 138.2 x 244.7 cm
Ex collection Rob Kattenburg
Purchased by the Dutch Maritime Museum, Amsterdam

The painting shows the ‘Zwarte Gallei’ of Dordrecht in the middle of the foreground with the flag of Prince Maurits on the mast and the flag of Jacob Michielsz on the stern. seesaw. The galley is attacked by three Spanish galleys, including that of the vice admiral, identified by the Spanish royal coat of arms on the canvas. At the stern of the Dordrecht galley, the red banner is brought down by a Spaniard, while the Spaniards are heavily bombed from the crow’s nest of the Dutch galley.
In the left background you can see the ship of Vice Admiral Joos de Moor with the Zeeland flag in the top. This ship is attacked by two galleys, including that of Frederico Spinola, recognizable by the Spanish royal flag on the mast. Historically this is therefore not entirely correct, because according to tradition Spinola flew his flag from the stern, unless this refers to the ship of the Spanish vice admiral, who hoisted this flag to his mast after Spinola’s death.

However, the Spanish vice admiral was not involved in an attack on Joos de Moor’s ship, but was involved in the attempts to overpower the ‘Black Galley’. The commander is depicted taking command from the stern.
On the far right is the ‘Seyl-Hondt’ of captain Logier Pietersz. depicted, also with the Zeeland flag. The ship is attacked by two Spanish galleys. To the right of this is the Zeeland galley ‘De Flesse’, recognizable by the red flag with the coat of arms of Vlissingen, which aims fire at the Spanish galleys that Jacob Michielsz. to attack.
Completely in the background the ship of Crijn Hendrickz., which could not participate in the battle due to the wind. In the background the Zeeland/Flemish coast with the cities of Breskens, Schoondijk, Oostburg, Cadzand, Sluis, Knokke, Heist and Damme. The crescents of galleys off the coast represent the Spanish scenes when they split into two groups of four.

ATTRIBUTED TO AERT ANTHONISZ. called VAN ANTUM

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