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

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.



Odier Collection, Paris, 1861; Count Andre Mniszech Collection, Paris; J. Pierpont Morgan, Esq. Collection; Stephen Carlton Clark Collection.

  • Seymour Slive, Frans Hals, 2nd ed. (London: Phaidon, 2014), 254, 275, pl. 154.
  • 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.
  • Alan Shestack, ed., Yale University Art Gallery Selections (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1983).

Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type





Hals, Frans 1580-1666

Technical metadata and APIs


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