Biography of Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn

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Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn was the premier artist in 17th century Europe during the great Golden Age of Dutch painting, well known for his Dutch Baroque style of art that lead to his title as one of the greatest painters in history. His incredible brush technique and his masterful appreciation of human nature combined to create a humongous impact on his peers as well as influencing tons of artists of later years.1 He was born on July 15, 1606, in Leiden, Netherlands, a small city located in the Dutch province of South Holland. Rembrandt was born into a large family, the eighth of nine children. His father, Harmen Gerritsz van Rijn, was a miller, and his mother, Neeltgen Willemsd van Zuytbroeck, was the daughter of a baker. Rembrandt studied at Latin school for seven years before enrolling in university in 1620, before leaving after only a few months to become an apprentice to the painter for Jacob Isaacsz van Swanenburgh.2 After working under Jacob Isaacsz van Swanenburgh for three years, Rembrandt left for Amsterdam, to work with Pieter Lastman, in 1624. While many artists in the 17th century felt like they needed to travel to Italy to fulfill their artistic training, Rembrandt never left Holland once in his entire life, taking pride in his Dutch nationality.3 Pieter Lastman was one of the most respected experts in historical paintings in all of Holland, as his inspiration in his works came mostly from mythological, historical, and biblical scenes. Like Lastman,

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