studio of Jan Daemen Cool, Pieter Pietersz Hein (1577–1629)

Photo courtesy of Tom St Aubyn (All rights reserved)


Country House
Raynham Hall
Pieter Pietersz Hein (1577–1629)
The Music Room
Medium and support
Oil on panel
Overall height: 36 cm, Overall width: 28 cm
studio of Jan Daemen Cool (1589-1660)
Catalogue Number


Pieter Pietersz Hein (1577–1629) was a Dutch naval commander and privateer. In his youth, he was captured by the Spanish and served two years as a galley slave; after his release he served in the Dutch East India Company from 1607 to 1612. Between 1624 and 1629 Hein made three voyages for the Dutch West India Company. On his last voyage, he made a spectacular ambush and capture of the Spanish ‘Silver Fleet’ off the Cuban coast, a prize worth about twelve million Dutch guilders. On his return he was made lieutenant admiral in the Navy and was killed soon after in a skirmish with Dunkirk privateers. Hein was celebrated as a hero and his image was circulated through engravings and plaster busts. 

This portrait is after an original of 1625 by Jan Daemen Cool (1589–1660), a Rotterdam portraitist who probably trained with van Miereveldt in Delft. He returned to Rotterdam, where he was the leading portrait painter in the second quarter of the seventeenth century. The original portrait of Hein is now lost but is known through an engraving by Hondius.1 The Raynham copy, which was later cut down, is contemporary with another copy by Cool’s workshop dated 1629, now in the Rijksmuseum.2 The heads appear to be by the same hand although the costumes have been painted by different hands, the Raynham version being more skilfully executed. In both the Raynham and the Rijksmuseum versions the details of costume differ slightly from the original on which Hondius’s engraving is based.

The identity of the sitter in this portrait had been lost but it was probably the portrait previously identified as the ‘original Head of Baron Vere’ referred to in a 1733 bill from Charles Jervas, for which he supplied ‘a rich gold frame’. A miniature in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge that appears to be after the original version is also identified as Horace Vere. Vere was a contemporary of Hein and the portrait may have been acquired by him when serving in the Dutch Republic.

by Amy Lim


Prince Frederick Duleep Singh, Portraits in Norfolk Houses, ed. Rev. Edmund Farrer, vol. 2, Norwich : Jarrold and Sons, 1928, vol. 2, p. 233, no. 43 (‘MAN’)

Bikker, Jonathan, Yvette Bruijnen and Gerdina Wuestma, eds., Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century in the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. Vol. 1: Artists born between 1570 and 1600, New Haven and London : Yale University Press, 2007, p. 110


  1. Willem Hondius after Jan Daemen Cool, Portrait of Pieter Pietersz Heyn, 1629, engraving on paper, 418 x 290 mm, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.

  2. Jan Daemen Cool (studio of), Pieter Pietersz Hein, 1629, oil on panel, 65 x 50 cm, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.


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