Michael Bryan.

Dictionary of painters and engravers, biographical and critical online

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royal nunnery of the Carmelites of that city.

VELASCO, Luis de, an historical painter. He
flourished at Toledo in 1564, and painted several
pictures for the cloister of the cathedral. In 1581
he was appointed painter to the chapter, and in the'
same year began his picture of the ' Incarnation of
Christ,' which is over the door of the cloister, and
which Antonio Ponz has attributed to Bias del
Prado ; this and three altar-pieces he finished in
1584-5. One of the latter represents the Virgin
holding the Infant in her arms, accompanied by
S. Anthony, S. Blaise, and a female Saint. Palo-
mino erroneously attributed this retable to Bias
del Prado, as Ponz had that of the Incarnation.
But the archives of the cathedral show that it was
executed by Luis de Velasco in 1585, and that a
sum of 419,788 maravedis was paid to him in that
year. A few more of his works are known. He
died at Toledo in 1606.
VELAZQUEZ, A. G. See Gonzales Velazquez.
VELAZQUEZ, Diego Rodriguez da Silva t, was
born at Seville on the 6th of June, 1599. There
has been some dispute as to the date, but the
registration of his baptism on that day, in the
parish of San Pedro, is still extant. His father was
Juan Rodriguez da Silva, his mother Geronima
Velazquez, so that the painter ought rather to have
been known as Silva, than by the name he has
rendered famous. The Silvas were Of gentle
Portuguese origin, but had been settled in the
capital of Andalusia over since the beginning of
the 16th century. The young Diego was intended
by his parents for some liberal profession, was

taught Latin, was introduced to belles lettres, and
even to philosophy. After a time, however, he
began to show such an unmistakable bent towards
art that he was placed as a pupil with Francisco
Herrera the elder, whose brutal manners are said
to have driven the boy away, after but a short
probation, to the studio of the milder Pacheco. In
his 'Arte de la Pintura,' Pacheco claims nearly all
the glory of his pupil's education. His assertions
must, however, be taken with some reserve, for
the mature art of Velazquez has vastly more in
common with the rough but painter-like vigour of
Herrera, than with the cold timidity of the other
Francisco. Whether the lad stayed longer with
his first master than tradition declares or not, a
comparison of their work leaves no room for doubt
as to the strong and permanent influence of Herrera's
example. The influence of a third master has been
said to count for something. This was Luis Tristan
da Toledo, a pupil of II Greco. On him, however,
no great stress need be laid. The true masters of
Velazquez were his models. He worked directly
from nature with a determined sincerity which has
not been surpassed. Huge studies of still-life, with
life-size figures introduced, exist to prove how
frankly he endeavoured to realize the actual look
of things. Before he was out of his teens he
painted the 'Water-Carrier' of Apsley House; the
' Adoration of the Kings ' of the Madrid Museum ;
and the ' Adoration of the Shepherds ' in the National
Gallery ; and in each of these the power given by
such studies is conspicuous.

In 1618, when he was not yet nineteen, Velazquez
married Paoheco's daughter Juana. Thirteen
months afterwards she bore him a daughter, Fran-
cisoa ; and two years later still, a second daughter,
Ignacia, who seems to have died in infancy. Fran-
cisca lived to become the wife of the painter Mazo
Martinez, and the mother of many children. The
wedded life of Velazquez was one of tranquil
felicity, and when he died, forty-two years after his
marriage, his wife followed him in eight days to
the grave. She seems to have been something of
an artist herself, for she holds a canvas in her hand
in her portrait at Madrid.

In April, 1622, Velazquez paid his first visit to
the Spanish capital. There he won the friend-
ship of Don Juan Fonseca, canon of Seville and
almoner to the king, who presented him to the
minister, Olivares. Of this nothing came for the
moment, and the painter returned to Seville. In
the first months of 1623, however, he received a
letter, through Fonseca, from Olivares, calling him
back, and enclosing a sum of fifty ducats to defray
expenses. He at once set out for Madrid, taking
his wife and his father-in-law with him. Within
a few days of his arrival he began and finished a
portrait of Fonseca, which was earned to the palace
and shown to the king. Philip IV. at once named
the painter of his household, with a salary of
twenty ducats a month, and commanded him to
begin a portrait of the royal person. Some time
had to elapse before this portrait was finished, for
during the summer of 1623, the king was greatly
occupied with the entertainment of the Prince of
Wales and his friend ' Steenie,' who were present
on their famous tour in search of a wife. Pacheco
says that Velazquez began a poitrait of Charles ;
it cannot now be traced. In the autumn of 1623
Philip's portrait was finished, and his delight in it
was such that he granted the painter a monopoly
in the royal features, and, it is said, ordered previous




portraits (by the Carduooi, Angelo Nardi, and
others) to be removed from the palace.

In August, 1628, Rubens arrived at Madrid, just
about the time that Velazquez was finishing his
famous picture of the Bebedores. According to
Pacheco, the two painters had already been in corre-
spondence, but however that may be, both natural
inclination and the express commands of Olivares
led the Spaniard to pay solicitous attention to the
Fleming. During nine months the two men lived
in close intimacy, and the influence of tlie elder
(Rubens was now iifty-one years of age) must have
had its effect upon his companion. In the work
of Velazquez no direct echo from Rubens can be
traced, but it was by his new friend's advice that
the Spanish painter made his first journey into
Italy. He set out on the 29th of June, 1629, sail-
ing from Barcelona in the same ship as Don
Ambrosio Spinola, the victor of Breda, and taking
his faithful slave Pareja with him. Olivares gave
him two hundred ducats for his journey, a gold
medallion of the king, and many letters of recom-
mendation. The first city in which Velazquez
made a stay was Venice. The pacific character
of his visit had been notified to the State inquisitors
before his arrival, by the Venetian ambassador at
Madrid (' Gaz. des Beaux Arts,' vol. i. p. 79). Here
he copied Tintoretto's ' Crucifixion ' and ' Last
Supper.' Prom Venice he went to Rome, by way
of Perrara, Bologna, and Loretto. At Rome he
remained for a whole year. Thanks to the in-
fluence of the Count Monterey, at that time Philip's
ambassador to the Vatican, he was assigned a
lodging in the Villa Mediois. Thence, after a stay
of two months, he was driven by fever to take
refuge in the Spanish Embassy. His time was
spent in making studies from the Italian masters,
few of which can now be traced, in painting such
sketches as the two from the Villa Medicis now
in the Madrid Gallery, and in completing the
' Forge of Vulcan,' now in the Museo del Prado,
and the ' Joseph's Coat,' at the Esoorial. Towards
the end of 1630 Velazquez went to Naples, where
he was the guest of the Spanish Viceroy, the Duke
of Alcala, and where he struck up a close friend-
ship with Spagnoletto. It was at the instigation
of Velazquez that Philip IV. bought many of those
pictures by the Valencian master which now hang
at Madrid.

Early in 1631 Velazquez was again in the Spanish
capital. Delighted to have his favourite back,
Philip assigned him for a studio the north gallery
of the Alcazar, which communicated with the royal
apartments by a door of which Philip kept the
key. The king soon fell into the habit of paying
a daily visit to the painter, with whose help he
himself made some by no means contemptible
essays in art. Soon after his return, Velazquez
finished a portrait of Don Baltasar Carlos, at the
age of two, and provided a sketch of the equestrian
statue of Philip which was afterwards modelled by
Pietro Tacoa, at Florence, and now stands before
the royal palace at Madrid. The sketch hangs in
the Uffizi. In 1634, on the occasion of his daughter
Francisca's marriage to Juan Bautista del Mazo-
Martinez, Velazquez was permitted to hand down
his court appointment to his son-in-law, and was
himself named an ayuda da guarda ropa, without
salary. Between thi^ time and 1648, the story of
Velazquez is contained in the chronological list of
his pictures. In the last weeks of 1637 he is said
to have painted Marie de Rohan, Duchesse de Ghev-

reuse, perhaps in the male costume in which she
fled from France. In 1638, probably, he painted
the 'Crucified Christ' (Madrid Gallery), as to
-which Sir William Stirling- Maxwell was in error
in supposing it to have been carried ofE to France
by Joseph Bonaparte or some of his generals. In
1642 he painted the two Aranjuez landscapes,
now at Madrid, during the sojourn of the court
in that retreat. The following year saw the
disgrace of Olivares. He was accompanied into
obscurity by the best wishes of Velazquez, who so
far disregarded the etiquette of the court to which
he belonged, as to visit the fallen minister in his
exile. The great equestrian portrait of Philip in
the Museo del Prado was the fruit of 1644. To
these years, too, belong the portraits of dwarfs,
fools, and other eccentric members of Philip's
household, which hang in the same gallery. In

1646 died the infante, Don Baltasar Carlos, and in

1647 Velazquez painted the ' Surrender of Breda,'
the famous 'Las Lanzas,' perhaps the finest purely
historic picture in the world.

In January, 1649, Velazquez embarked at
Malaga on his second visit to Italy. He was
accompanied as before by Pareja, and he travelled
in the suite of the Duke of Najera, who was on
his way to receive Philip's fiancie, the Grand
Duchess Mariana of Austria. The main object of
this second journey was to collect pictures and
casts from the antique for the Alcazar and for the
proposed Academy of Fine Art, which was only
to be established a century later by Ferdinand VI.
The painter landed at Genoa, visited successively
Milan, Padua, Venice (where he bought a Veronese
and three Tintorettos), Bologna (where he engaged
the decorative painters Colonna and Mitelli to go
to Spain), Modena, Parma, Florence, and Rome.
From Rome he passed on almost immediately to
Naples, where he presented himself to the Viceroy
(the Conde d'Onata, who had just suppressed the
rising of Masaniello), and renewed his friendship
with Ribera. After this he returned to Rome, and
stayed there for more than a year. Innocent X.,
Giovanni Battista Pamphili by birth, was the
reigning pontifE, and his portrait, now in the Doria
Pamphili palace, is one of the finest works of
Velazquez. Among other portraits painted during
his stay were those of Donna Olympia Maldaohini,
of Flaminia Triunfi, of Girolamo Bibaldo, and of
various chamberlains and other servants of the
pope. All these, says Palomino, were painted with
th'ose long-handed tools which have since been
known as Velazquez brushes. In the early months
of 1651 the painter still lingered in Italy, buf a
letter from his friend Fernando Ruiz de Contreras,
hinting at Philip's impatience for his return, led
him to make preparations for his journey home-
wards. He sent his collections off to the care of
the Spanish Viceroy at Naples, and embarked at
Genoa for Barcelona, where he landed in June,

On the 16th of February, 1652, Velazquez was
named Aposentador Mayor, or grand marshal, of
the palace to Philip. During the eight years of
life which remained to bim, the duties of this office
must have demanded a large part of his time, and
this may, in some degree, account for his adoption
of that broader and more summary manner which
marks his final period. The chief works which
belong to this time are, ' Las Hilanderas,' or the
' Tapestry Weavers,' ' Las Meninas,' or the ' Maids
of Honour,' the so-called ' Portrait of Alonso Cano,'





the ' ^Bop ' and ' Menippus,' and the later portraits
of Philip and his family. The 'Meninas' was
painted in 1656, and it was not until 1659 that
Velazquez was received into the order of Santiago.
Hence it has been sought to discredit the story
which ascribes the red cross on the painter's breast
to the hand of Philip himself. There is no need,
however, to abandon the tradition, which has
every probability. We have only to suppose the
graceful act was done some time after the com-
pletion of the picture, and that the deliberate
Spaniards took their time over that verification of
the artist's noblesse which was necessary before he
could be finally received into the knightly brother-
hood. His reception took place on the 28th of
November, 1659.

Shortly before this the Mar4chal-duc de Gramont,
who came to demand the hand of the Infanta
Maria Teresa for Louis XIV., had made his entry
into Madrid. The painter had been directed to
attend upon him, and five months later it became
his duty, as Aposentador, to carry out the Spanish
share of the preparations on the Island of Pheasants,
in the Bidassoa, where the marriage by proxy was
to take place. Setting out from Madrid eight days
before tiie king, in company with two assistants,
his son-in-law Mazo and one Jos^ da Villareal, he
prepared lodgings for the court along the whole
route to the Castle of Fontarabia, and completed
the pavilion on the island. During the ceremonies
connected with the marriage he acquitted himself
admirably, but the fatigue of it all was too much
for his strength. He returned ill to Madrid, and
after a few partial recoveries, he finally sank and
died on the 6th of August, 1660, in the sixty-first
year of his age. He left all he possessed to his
wife, Juana Pacheco, but- she followed him to the
grave on the 14th of the same month. After
his death, the painter's affairs were found, or at
least declared, to be in disorder. The Spanish
treasury claimed a sum of about one and a quarter
million maravedis from his estate, and laid an
embargo upon his effects. Six years later this was
taken off on the payment, by his son-in-law Mazo,
of half that sum, the remaining half being remitted
as due by the treasury for arrears of pay to the
king's Aposentador. As a man Velazquez seems
to have been all that was attractive and admirable.
As a painter he more thoroughly foreshadowed the
art of our own time than any other ' old master,'
and so his pictures are held in higher esteem in
modern schools of art than those of any one else.

The chief pupils of Velazquez were Mu'rillo,
Carreno de Miranda, Juan de Pareja, Juan Bautista
Mazo-Martinez, Juan de Alfaro y Gomez, Juan
de la Corte, Francisco Palaoios, Nicolas de Villacis,
Francisco de Burgos, Tomas de Aguiar, and Antonio
Puga, by one or the other of whom many pictures
ascribed to the master were painted.

The following list includes all the more important
works of Velazquez. y^.K.


Museum, The Ooronation of the Virgin.
„ The Adoration of the Kings.

„ Christ Crucified.
„ S. Anthony Abbot and S.

Paul the Hermit.
„ Los Bebedores (The Drinkers).





Mercury and Argus.



Diica de Villa-

The Forge of Vulcan.
Las Lanzas (Surrender

Las Meninas (The Maids of

Las Hilanderas (The Spinners,

or ' Tapestry Weavers ').
Portrait of Philip III.
Seven portraits of Philip IV.
Four portraits of Don Baltaear

Portrait of Don Fernando.
„ „ *AlonsoCano' (pro-
bably Martinez-
„ „ Luis de Gongora y

„ „ Alonso Martinez de

„ „ II Conde-duca Oli-

„ „ Don Antonio Alon-
so Pimentel.
Two anonymous male por-
Portrait of Margaret of Austria,

Q. of Philip in.
Portrait of Elizabeth de Bour-
bon, Q. of Philip IV.
Three portraits of Mariana
of Austria, second Q. of
Philip IV.
Portrait of Maria, Q. of Hun-
Portrait of Infanta Maria Te-
resa, daughter of Philip IV.
Portrait of Juana Pacheco, wife

of Velazquez.
Two portraits of Francisca,

daughter of Velazquez.
Portrait of an old Lady.
' El Bobo de Coria.'
'El Nino de Valleoas.'
Portrait of Seb. de Morra, a

Portrait of El Prime, do.

„ „ 'Don Autouio el
Ingles,' do.
' Barberousse,* fool to Philip

' Pablillos de Valladolid,' do.
' Don Juan de Austria,' do.
Ten landscapes.

ca de Villw-'t-r, , .. »,,,.,. tit
hermosa. j Portrait of Phdip IV.

Diuia de Feman >
Nunes. j
Duca de Alia.


Dvc de Mont-

the Wife of Don
Christoval del

„ the Son, do.

„ II Conde-duca Oli-

„ Don Baltasar Carlos.

„ Infanta Margarita


„ PhiUp IV.

,, „ n Conde-duca Oli-
„ „ „ a young Man.

Museum. Two peasants, Man and Woman.


Castle Howard. Earl oft ■., , , ,^v -kt-,

Carlisle f ^°^®^ saved irom the Nile.

Hampton Court.

The Prince of Parma with his
. dwarf.

Portrait of Juan de Pareja.
„ „ Queen Mariana of
Portrait of Philip IV.

„ „ Queen Elisabeth de




Dulwich Gall,
Stafford House.

Kingston W. R.BmH, \ g^^^^j^ j^^ , j^as Meninas.'

„ ' „ ' Portrait of Philip IV.

„ „ „ „ Cardinal Gaspar de

„ „ Borgia.

„ „ „ „ an Ecclesiastic.

London. Nat. Gallery. Christ at the Column.
„ „ Orlando dead (?).

„ „ The Adoration of the Shep-

„ „ Portrait of Philip IV". (full

„ „ Portrait of Philip IV. Umst).

„ „ Philip IV. hunting the Wild

Portrait of Philip IV.
~i. Carlo Borromeo {conip. of
eight figures).
„ „ S. Francesco Borgia {do.).

„ „ Landscape with figures.

„ Dorchester Souse. Portrait of Philip IV.
„ „ „ „ II Conde-duoa Oli-

vares. "

„ „ Three portraits of Don Baltasar

„ „ Portrait of Olivares.

„ „ „ „ a Princess (?).

,, » .) ). a Lady.

„ ,, „ „ a young Girl.

A Boar Hunt.
S. Clara.

A Man's portrait.
Portrait of Juaua Pacheco.
„ a Cardinal.
„ Pope Innocent X.
„ „ Francisco de Que-

vedo (?).
„ „ a Man.
Two young Boys.
The Water-Carrier of Seville.
Village fete near a Fortress.
Landscape with Market.
Portrait of Philip IV.

„ A natural Son of
„ „ Velazquez.
„ „ Julian Valcarcel.
„ „ Philip IV.
Dwarf with Dog and Parrot.
A Boar Hunt.
Landscape with Figures.
Portrait of Don Baltasar Carlos,
Bust portrait of a young Man.
Portrait of Don Baltasar Carlos.

Dudley House.
Jpsley House.

, Earl of JVorthirook.
, £ridgewater Ho.

Lord Ashlmrton.

Grosvenor House.

Buckingham Pal.
Marquis of

Marquis of Bute.
D. of Devotishire.

Earl Stanhope.
Sir W. Gregory,
Earl of Clarendon,

, F. Clare Ford, Esq.

Fr. Cook, Esq,


> „ „ Don Felipe Prosper.

„ „ Olivares.

„ „ Innocent X.

„ ,, Velazquez.
Two Landscapes with Figures.
Innocent X. (full length).
Innocent X. (full length).
Portrait of a Woman.

„ „ a Gentleman.
A Duel in the Prado.
Philip IV. hunting the Wild

The Alameda, Seville.
Portrait of Olivares.

„ „ Q. Elisabeth de

„ „ Q. Mariana of

I Deliverance of S. Peter.

Portrait of Q. Mariana of
, An old Peasant.

, Two Peasants.

Earl o/) Portrait of Don Adrian Pulido
Radnor. J Pareja.

„ Portrait of Juan de Pareja.

Lynford Hall,

Mrs. L. 1
Stephens. J




Earl of Breadalbane,
L. Arundel of Wardour,
Lord Heytesmry.
Lord NoTthwick (?).
Mrs. Henry Huth.

Earl of \

Leconjield. J

R. Morrit, \

Esq. J

Duke of \

Bedford, j

Portrait of PhiHp IV.

„■ „ a young Girl {an
infanta ?).

Male Portrait.

Venus and Cupid.

Portrait of Don Adrian Pulido

Christ at Emmaus.
Male Portrait.
Sketch for the ' Bebedores.'
Lot and his Daughter.
Portrait of Philip IV.

„ „ Olivares.

„ „ Q. Elisabeth da

Broom Hall, Earl oft ^^ . .. ,„,.

Fife. _e;^;„/J Portrait of OUvares.

„ „ Dog with a Bone.

Cawdor House, Lanark. Portrait of Innocent X.
Gosford Hall. Earl oft -., , t> i -j.

Keir, Perthshire. A Spanish Lady.

„ Small portrait of Velazquez (?).

„ Fish and Fruits.

„ Two Landscapes with Figures.

Rossia Priory. ^.^Z^r.|p„^,^^,„,^^^„„^^^„


Louvre. Portrait of the Infanta Mar-
garita Maria.
„ Portrait of Philip IV.
„ Meeting of Gentlemen.
„ Portrait of Infanta Maria Te-
„ Portrait of a young Woman.
M. de Rothschild. „ „ Don Luis de Haro.

Eudoxie-Marcille ) „ „ Infanta Maria Te-

Coll. ) resa.

Maurice Cottier. Buffoon playing with a toy
Paul Lefort. Young Man laughing.





JPitti Fal.

Portrait of Philip IV.
Two Male Portraits.



Fal. Ducale.
Pal. Doria.

Portrait of Philip IV.
Two portraits of Velazquez.
Portrait of Velazquez.
Portrait of Innocent X.



„ „ Velazquez.




Portrait of Alessaudro del


Male Portrait.


Portrait of the Infanta Maria.


Raczynski Col.

A Dog.

Portrait of Olivares.

Two Male Portraits.


. Staedel Inst.

Cardinal Gaspar de Borgia.
Portrait of Infanta Margarita



Cardinal Eospigliosi.




Two Portraits of Philip IV.
Portrait of Don Baltasar Carlos.

„ „ Don Felipe Prosper.
„ „ Infanta Maria Te-

„ „ „ Infanta Margarita

„ Young Man with a Flower,
Academy. Female Portrait.
Harrach Coll, A Spanish Prince.






Petersburg. Hermitacie. Two Portraits of Philip IT.

„ Olivares.
„ „ Portrait of Innocent a.

A young Peasant.
Leuch- '
temberff Coll.

' !• Male Portrait.



Museum. Portrait of Philip IV.
„ „ „ a young Man.

The Hague. Museum. Portrait of Don Baltasar Carlos.

J, „ A Landscape with Figures.

New York. Metropolitan l-p^^^. p;ggg_

Museum. )
Yale College, U.S.A. Male Portrait.


Amador de los Rios, ' Seville pintoresoa,' &c. (Seville,

' El arte en EspaSa ' (Madrid, 1862—1870).
D. Jose Maria Asensio y Toledo, ' Fr. Pacheco, sus obras

artisticas y literarias' (Seville, 1867).
Bosarte, ' Viage artistioo a varies pueblos de Espaiia '

(Madrid, 1804).
Cean Bermudez, 'Diocionario historico,' &c. (Madrid

D. Pedro de Madrazo, ' Catalogo descriptivo e historico

del Museo del Prado ' (Madrid, 1872).
D. Pedro de Madrazo, 'Viage artistico de tres siglos

por las colecciones' (Barcelona, 1884).
Francisco Pacheco, ' El arte de la pintura,' &c. (Seville,

Palomino de Castro y Velasco, ' El museo pictorioo y

Esoala optica ' (Madrid, 1715—1724).
Zarco del Valle, ' Documentos ineditos para la historia

de las bellas artes en Espana ' (Madrid, 1870).
Ceferino Aranjo Sanchez, ' Los Museos de Espana '

(Madrid, 1875).
Cruzeda Villaamil, ' Eevista Europea : Inf ormaciones

de las calidades de Diego de Silva Velazquez, aposen-

tador de palacio ' (vol. ii. Madrid, 1874).
Vicente Carducho, ' Dialogos de la Pintura ' (Madrid,

L. Viardot, ' Les Musfes d'Espagne ' (Paris, 1860).
Clement de Ris, ' Le Musee Royal de Madrid ' (Paris,

Charles Blanc, 'Histoire des Peintres. Ecole Espag-

nole ' (Paris).
W. Burger, ' Tr^sors d'art en Angleterre ' (Paris, 1865).
"W". Burger, 'Velazquez et ses oeuvres ' (Paris, 1865).
Ch. Davillier, ' Memoire de Velazquez sur 41 tableaux

envoy^s par Philippe IV. 4 I'Escurial' (Paris, 1874).
Quillet, ' Dictionnaire des Peintres Espagnols' (Paris,

T. Gaufcier, ' Don Diego Velazquez da Silva ' (' L' Artiste '

for March, 1868).
' Notice sur I'esquisse de Velazquez, premiere pens§e

du cSlebre tableau, "La Eeddition de Breda," qui

existe au Mus^e de Madrid et qu'on nomme ordin-

airement le tableau des " Lances " ' (Paris ; no date ;

? 1865).
Charles Gueullette, 'Les Peintres Espagnols' (Paris,

Paul Lefort, 'Yelazquez' (one of the 'Artistes

Celebres ' series : Paris, 1888).

Online LibraryMichael BryanDictionary of painters and engravers, biographical and critical → online text (page 169 of 201)