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Portrait of a Young Man with a Skull

c. 1519
(Dutch, 1494–1533)
Sheet: 18.6 x 14.6 cm (7 5/16 x 5 3/4 in.)
Catalogue raisonné: Hollstein 174
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Location: not on view

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Description

Dressed in exceptionally fine attire––fancy plumes, brocade collar, and slashed sleeves––this young man solemnly points at a skull he is carrying in his cloak. The juxtaposition of the skull and the lavish clothing is a message that frivolous pleasures are misguided and the bravado of youth is ephemeral.
Portrait of a Young Man with a Skull

Portrait of a Young Man with a Skull

c. 1519

Lucas van Leyden

(Dutch, 1494–1533)
Netherlands, 16th century

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