We use cookies to improve your experience online. By using our website, you agree to the use of cookies as described in our cookies policy.

Het Schilder Boeck waerin Voor eerst de Leerlustige-Jeught den gront der Edele Vrye Schilderkonst in verscheyden deelen wort voor-gedragen. Daer na in drij deelen t'leven der vermaerde Doorluchtighe Schilders des Ouden ende Nieuwen Tydts. Eyndlyck d'uytlegginghe op den Metamorphoseon Pub Ovidij Nasonis. Met d'uytbeeldinge der Figueren, Alles dienstich ende nut den Schilders, Const-beminders onde Dichters, en alle andere Staten van menschen. Door Karel van Mander Schilder Hier is op nieu byge-voecht het leven des Autheurs.

Karel van Mander

RA Collection: Book

Record number




T'Amsterdam,: By Jacob Pieterss Wachter Boeckvercooper op den Dam., Anno - 1618

Physical Description

[Tentative collation, as both Royal Academy copies are imperfect:] Ff. [13], 22, [2], 213, [3], [9], 122, [2], [8], title-plate, [68] pl. (ports.); 211 mm. (Octavo.)

General Note

The plates carry no numbers.


Folio [1](signature *ij) Dedic. to 'Den Eerentsesten ... Overlander' by I.P.Wachter - F[2, 3] (*4, [5]) 'Voor-Reden Op den grondt ...' - f.[4, 5] [Poems] - f.[6-13](**i-[viii]) [Poems] - f. 1-22 (A1-[C6]) Text, 'Den Grondt der Edel vry Schilder-const'; start of 'De Tafel des Schilder-consten Grondts' - f.[2] ([C7, 8]) Continuation of 'Tafel' - f.1-25 [Missing] Text of Antick. Schild.? - f.[26] ([E2]) Titlepage, 'Het Leven Der Moderne ... Italiaensche ... [date torn away in R.A. copy]' - f.27 (E3) Dedic. 'Aen Eersamen ... 1603 ...' by C. v. Mander - f.28 (E4) 'Voor-Reden, op het leven der Moderne Italiaensche Schilders' - f. 29-119 (E5-[Q7]) Text, 'Het Leven der Moderne ... Italiaensche ...' - f.[120]([Q8]) Titlepage, 'Het Leven der Doorluchtighe Nederlandtsche ... 1617' - f.121 (R[1]) Dedic., 'Aen Eerweerde achtbare Heeren ... 1604', by C. v. Mander - f.122 (R2) 'Voor-reden op't Leven der Nederlandtsche ...' - f.123-213 (R3 - Ee5) Text on Netherlands painters - f.[1]([Ee6]) 'Appendix, oft Aenhangh van het Schilder-boeck ...' - f.[1]([Ee7]) 'Register der oude Antijcke ...; Register ... der Italiaensche ...' - f.[1] ([Ee8]) 'De Tafel der Nederlandtsche ...' - f.[1] ([*1]) Titlepage, 'Uytleggingh Op den Metamorphosis Pub. Ovidii Nasonis ... 1616' - f.[1](*ij) Dedic, 'Aen den achtbaren en edelen Heer, Mr. Gedeon Fallet ... 1604', by C. v. Mander - f.[1-3](*iii-v) 'Voor-reden'; 'Ode' - f.[1-4]([*6-8]+?) Poems - f. 1-109 (A1-[O5]) Text, Uytbeeldinghe der Figueren ... 1616'; dedic. on verso - f.111-122 (O7-[Q2]) Text, 'Van de Wtbeeldinghen der Figuren ...' - f.[1-2] (Q3,[4]) 'Register op d'Wtlegginghe van den Metamorphosis'; colophon (1616) - f.[1-8] (R1-4, S1-4) ' 't Geslacht de geboort plaets tydt leven ende wercken Van karel Van Mander ...'; 'Toegift' poem by G.A. Bredero.

Responsibility Note

The title-plate is signed as designed by W. Val[ckert]. and engraved by N. Las[tman]. The portrait of Van Mander is signed as engraved by Nicola Lastman. Most plates are signed by Hh (one as by Hhondius) as maker or intaglio-printer. One (pl. '54') is signed as made by 'R. boud.' (that is Robbert de Baudous) and printed by Hh. The work is dedicated by the publisher, Iacob Pietersz. Wachter, to 'Den Eerentsesten ... Heeren, De Heere Volkaert Overlander, Raedt Der Admiraliteyt ...'.


Bibliotheca Belgica, vol. IV, p.46. A. Stanneck, Ganz ohne Pinsel gemalt (2003); R. de Mambro Santos, La civil conversazione pittorica: riflessione estetica e produzione artistica nel trattato di Karel van Mander (1998); K. van Mander, The lives of the illustrious Netherlandish and German painters from the first edition of the Schilder-boeck (1603-1604), ed. H. Miedema (1994); W.S. Melion, Shaping the Netherlandish canon: Karel Van Mander's Schilder-Boeck (1991); K. van Mander, Der grondt der edel vry schilder-const, ed. H. Miedema (2.v., 1973); H. Miedema, Karel van Mander: het bio-bibliografisch materiaal (1972).

Summary Note

This handbook for artists was first published in 1604. The title-plate of this edition carries the publication-date of 1618; some divisional title-pages have imprints with dates of 1616 or 1617; a colophon has the date of 1616. One plate (the portrait of Iacobus de Geyn) carries the date of 1610. The text is in six sections: [1] the 'Grondt der ... Schilderconst', a poem on the theory of painting; [2] 'Leven van de antieke schilders', or lives of ancient painters; [3] 'Leven der Italiaensche schilders', or lives of Italian painters, including Mander's contemporaries; [4] 'Leven der Nederlandtsche ... Schilders', on Dutch and German painters (including contemporaries) (a primary source of information for many artists); [5] an interpretation of the symbolism of Ovid's 'Metamorphoses'; [6] an iconography of allegoric figures. The plates show portraits of artists - most of them signed by 'Hh', that is Hendrik Hondius (who in 1610 published a series of 68 portraits as Pictorum aliquot celebrium praecipue Germaniae inferioris effigies).


[First copy] The dedication page is inscribed in ink, 'George Clausen June 1872'. The front loose endpaper carries a letter from 61, Carlton Hill, N.W. written in ink, 'Dec 3rd - 08. Dear Yeames, Here is "Van Mander's Schilder-Boek" - which I hope the Royal Academy will do me the honour of accepting, as a gift to the Library: as it is one of the old authorities it may be useful there. - Sincerely yours George Clausen'.

Copy Note

Both Royal Academy copies are imperfect. The first copy contains only the title-plate and signatures *ij, *4-[8], **[i-viii], A[1-8], B[1-8], C[1-8], i.e. folios [14], 22, [2], carrying the text of Den Grondt der edel vry Schilderconst, preceded by its dedic., Voor-Reden and poems and followed by its Tafel. The second copy omits the text relating to the ancient painters (folios 1-25) and binds the texts on the Metamorphoses and allegoric representation at the beginning of the book. Some plates are scattered through the text; others are bunched together. The plates carry no plate-numbers, but in this copy they have been numbered by hand in ink, bottom left - but this numbering is not the same as the order in which they are bound in.

Binding Note

[First copy:] 17th-century white vellum; unlettered. [Second copy] 17th-century white vellum, spine inscribed in ink, 'C.V. Mander. Uitlegge [illegible]'.

Name as Subject


Painting - Theory - Technique - History - 17th century
Painters - Painting - Europe - Netherlands - Belgium - Italy - History
Treatises - Poems - Art history - Biography - Netherlands - 17th century
Pictorial works - Netherlands - 17th century