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Daily Life in Holland in the Year 1566: And the Story of My Ancestor's Treasure Chest [Hardcover]

Rien Poortvliet
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Sep 1992
The creator of Gnomes and Secrets of the Gnomes captures the essence of everyday life in turbulent 16th-century Holland with words and images that are rich in detail and coloration. Poortvliet was inspired to create this text after discovering a distant ancestor's armoire containing a treasure trove of insights into the world of his forebears. 208 full-color illustrations.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Harry N. Abrams, Inc. (1 Sep 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0810933098
  • ISBN-13: 978-0810933095
  • Product Dimensions: 30.9 x 26.2 x 2.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,443,788 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The 'Real' Story of Life in 1566! 6 Aug 1997
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
What a treat at Amazon's price! I ordered this book in anticipation of a trip to Holland and was AMAZed when it arrived. It is a beautiful book--even had I paid twice Amazon's price.
The author/artist's telling of the story of his ancestor's cabinet, using wonderful paintings of day-to-day life, clothing, customs is a stunning combination. I am still re-reading about 20 or 30 pages daily, taking time over the text and painting details I skimmed in my first quick overview. I am not an art expert, but I have always liked paintings in the old, Dutch style. The artist includes a few of his own renditions of some lesser and well-known 16th century artists' works. His own way with portraits displays a depth of character, particularly in the faces we see several times within the book. I particularly enjoy his portrayal of everyday life--including some of 16th century life's not-so-pleasant aspects. Also, some earthy, funny pieces.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent illustrations and content! 17 Jun 1998
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I recently became aware of some Dutch ancestry going back well into the 16 century. This led me to want to know more about that period. This book accomplishes exactly what I'd hoped for. It's comprehensive, has superbly drawn illustrations and quickly lets you experience Dutch life over 425 years ago. It's a real labor of love and a fine acquisition!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The artistic imagination.... 24 July 2001
By Dianne Foster - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
DAILY LIFE IN HOLLAND IN THE YEAR 1566 is a graphically and beautifully illustrated book by Rien Poortvliet--a gifted Dutch artist with a talent for visualizing past times and bringing them to life. Many of his illustrations contain disturbing content--people hanged and still dangling from the gallows, miscreants tortured and locked in cages, children and adults deathly ill and/or starving. In 1566, the Dutch were struggling with the Spanish for control of the Netherlands and the aftermath of war is not pretty.
However, many of Poorvliet's pictures also depict everyday scenes concerning the more pleasant side of life. The viewer is shown ships at sea; horses carrying soldiers and pulling plows; all kinds of housing--floorplans to facades to fully formed buildings; clothing of the various classes including the elaborate headgear of wealthy, deftly wrapped scarves, and helmets; household implements such as lanterns, pails, cooking pots, and candle holders; farming tools; vegetables and meats; and plenty of rural scenery comparable to the works of Ruysdael.
Poorvliet's DAILY LIFE IN HOLLAND is based on information he collected from court records and other sources and tells the story of several members of a family over the course of one year. Poortvliet's earlier illustrative tale, IN MY GRANDFATHER'S HOUSE vividly depicted life in Zeeland over several centuries. I actually liked IN MY GRANDFATHER'S HOUSE better than LIFE IN HOLLAND because he portrayed history by tracing his own ancestors back through past generations. First he imagined his father's life, then his grandfather's life, then his great-grandfather's life, etc.
Poortvliet's books provide a wonderful way to visualize life in past times...
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is a real treasure! 13 Oct 1998
By JoyceT - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
You don't have to be Dutch to love this book, it's absolutely marvelous. It brings another time and culture to live with its wonderful drawings, and the story Poortvliet weaves is alternately touching, funny, sad, educational and passionate.No matter how many times I look this book over, it never fails to amaze me. If I could only have 10 books, this would be one I would keep.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The 'Real' Story of Life in 1566! 6 Aug 1997
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
What a treat at Amazon's price! I ordered this book in anticipation of a trip to Holland and was AMAZed when it arrived. It is a beautiful book--even had I paid twice Amazon's price.
The author/artist's telling of the story of his ancestor's cabinet, using wonderful paintings of day-to-day life, clothing, customs is a stunning combination. I am still re-reading about 20 or 30 pages daily, taking time over the text and painting details I skimmed in my first quick overview. I am not an art expert, but I have always liked paintings in the old, Dutch style. The artist includes a few of his own renditions of some lesser and well-known 16th century artists' works. His own way with portraits displays a depth of character, particularly in the faces we see several times within the book. I particularly enjoy his portrayal of everyday life--including some of 16th century life's not-so-pleasant aspects. Also, some earthy, funny pieces.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent illustrations and content! 17 Jun 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I recently became aware of some Dutch ancestry going back well into the 16 century. This led me to want to know more about that period. This book accomplishes exactly what I'd hoped for. It's comprehensive, has superbly drawn illustrations and quickly lets you experience Dutch life over 425 years ago. It's a real labor of love and a fine acquisition!
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another superb book from Rien! 6 Feb 2000
By Mary Jo Sminkey - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Absolutely stunning book! I love Rien's work and own many of his books, and was lucky enough to get many of them at the original list prices which were just amazing for the quality of the artwork in them. This is a wonderful portrait of life in his own country many centuries ago. Every detail of life seems to be covered here, from getting dressed to bathing (or lack of it) to rats, eating, etc. I don't know which is better, the perfectly detailed drawings or the text descriptions of everything. I didn't think at first I would like the book, as I prefer his ones on animals, but I wasn't disappointed!
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