Portrait of an Elderly Woman, traditionally called Mevrouw Bodolphe Artist: Frans Hals (Dutch, ca. 1581–1666)


European Art

On view, 2nd floor, European Art

Frans Hals was born in Antwerp, the son of a clothworker and weaver from Mechelen. Essentially a figure painter, he was famous for his dazzling military groups and solid bourgeois portraits, such as those of the Bodolphe couple (see also 1961.18.23), as well as for quick sketches of fisher-boys, ragamuffins, and tavern revelers. The somber tone of these two paintings contrasts with his earlier pictures, which are executed in bright, slashing strokes of color. This was the accepted style for portraiture at the time, however, when Protestant and other cultural ideals required stern, sober depictions of individuals.


Oil on canvas


unframed: 48 3/16 × 38 3/8 in. (122.4 × 97.5 cm)

Credit Line

Bequest of Stephen Carlton Clark, B.A. 1903

Accession Number



17th century


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



Jacques Antoine Odier (1798–1864), Paris; sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, March 25, 1861, lot 18; sold to Count Andrzej Jerzy Mniszech (1823–1905), Paris, 1861. Agnew’s and Sons, London, 1906; sold to J. Pierpont Morgan, 1906 (consigned to Knoedler and Company); sold to private collection. Knoedler and Company, New York; sold to Stephen Carlton Clark (1882–1960), 1935; bequeathed to the Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn., 1961
  • Seymour Slive, Frans Hals, 2nd ed. (London: Phaidon, 2014), 254, 274–275, pl. 152 and 153
  • Michael Conforti et al., The Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings, exh. cat. (Williamstown, Mass.: Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, 2006), 311, 313, 328, no. 150, fig. 258, 261
  • Claus Grimm, Frans Hals: The Complete Work (New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1990), 140, no. 114
  • Samson Lane Faison Jr., The Art Museums of New England (Boston: David R. Godine, 1982),
  • Claus Grimm and E. C. Montagni, L'Opera completa di Frans Hals (Milan: Rizzoli International Publications, Inc., 1974), fig. no. 158
  • Katherine Neilson and Andrew Carnduff Ritchie, Selected Paintings and Sculpture from the Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1972), fig. no. 20
  • Felix Becker and Ulrich Thieme, Allgemeines Lexikon der bildenden Künstler von der Antike bis zur Gegenwart, XV (Leipzig: W. Engelmann, 1970–71), 533
  • "A Magnificent Bequest," Yale Alumni Magazine XXV (November 1961), 14–18
  • A Collector's Taste, Selections from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Stephen C. Clark. A Benefit Exhibition of Paintings for The Fresh Air Association of St. John, 12 January - 30 January 1954, exh. cat. (New York: Knoedler and Company, 1954), no. 3
  • Franz Dulberg, Frans Hals: Ein Leben und ein Werk (Stuttgart: Paul Neff, 1930), 162, 171, 172 and 174
  • Wilhelm Reinhold Valentiner, Frans Hals: des Meisters Gemälde (Stuttgart: Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 1921), 189–190, 319, fig. nos. 189 and 190
  • E. W. Woes, Frans Hals, sa vie et son oeuvre (Bruxelles: G. van Oest & cie, 1909),
  • Wilhelm Reinhold Valentiner, The Hudson-Fulton celebration (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, c. 1909), fig. no. 33 and 34
  • T. Humphry Ward, Pictures in the Collection of J. Pierpont Morgan at Princes Gate & Dover House, London (London: privately printed, 1907),
  • C Hofstede de Groot, A Catalogue Raisonné of the Most Eminent Dutch Painters of the Seventeenth Century, 1 (London: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc., 1907), fig. 157–158
  • Percy Rendell Head, Van Dyck and Frans Hals, Part 2 (New York: Scribner & Welford, 1879), 22
  • Wilhelm von Bode, Frans Hals und seine schule: Ein beitrag zu einer kritischen behandlung der holländischen malerei (Leipzig: E. A. Seemann, 1871), 133–134,, fig. Nos. 55 and 56
  • Hotel Drouot, Paris, Collection de Mme James Odier, sale cat. (25 Mars 1861), 9, fig. no. 18
Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type





[CR] "AETAT SVAE 73 / ANo. 1643 / FH"


[CR, in ligature] "FH"

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