Merry Company in the Tavern
Signiert: „J. Steen“; a woman in an untidy, reddish silk dress and a gauze cap sings from a printed sheet of paper; an elderly man looks over her shoulder and sings along; beside her, a violinist (perhaps identical with the painter) sits, also singing, and looks with a jaunty smile over his shoulder at a lad who toasts the singer; on the left, two women and two men sit at a table laden with food; one of the men is just taking a big gulp; fine metal tableware stands on a wall shelf; a piece of roast meat can be seen on the right, on a table laid with a Smyrna carpet; behind the table, two well-dressed men talk with a girl; through the open door one can see trees and houses; the upper part of the picture is filled by a curtain, gathered on both sides; the painting is executed in the later, not very fine manner of the Master, but it is very lively in its uniform red tint.
From the estate of duke Ernest II of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg (cf. 1804 inventory, 1826 inventory). April 15, 1935 restoration at A. Unger/Dresden (file 3405); 1935 exhibited in room 11, Oberlichtsaal (Gotha 1935); 1943 removal to Reinhardsbrunn (catalog 1943, p. 176); end of January 1946 loss in Reinhardsbrunn; present location: Oberlin/Ohio, Allen Memorial Art Museum - according to a museum catalog of the Allen Memorial Art Museum after 1946 in German private collection before it was sold by dealer G. Cramer (The Hague) in 1958 to Oberlin (see letter of 10.7.1995 from the Curator of Western Art before 1850 of the Museum in Oberlin).