The Netherlands’ Royal Museum has has bought the 17th-century painting The Mayor of Delft and his Daughter by Dutch master Jan Steen for £8m (€11.9m).
The masterpiece, which dates from 1655, is one of just a handful of portraits produced by Steen, who is best known for his scenes of daily life in the Netherlands’ Golden Age.
It was sold by the heirs of Britain’s Lady Janet Douglas Pennant in March, though the British government initially delayed granting an export permit while it researched whether a British museum wished to make a competing bid.
The Mayor of Delft is the most expensive purchase the Dutch museum has ever made – although it houses numerous priceless paintings by Steen and his contemporaries, including Rembrandt’s famous Night Watch.”
The Royal Museum, known in Dutch as the Rijksmuseum, said it paid for the painting with financial support from the government, art funds and corporate sponsors.