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Merchant Ships

A work made of etching in black on ivory laid paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of etching in black on ivory laid paper.




Reinier Zeeman (Reinier Nooms)
Dutch, c. 1623-c. 1664

About this artwork

Reinier Nooms was a painter and etcher who harbored a great love of the sea. He spent many years as a sailor on Dutch merchant vessels traveling between his native Amsterdam and ports in France, Italy, and North Africa. As a reflection of his nautical background, he frequently signed his name as “Zeeman,” or, “Seaman.” This signature appears among the clouds at the top of the etching seen here, one of 170 he produced. Nooms’s realistic detail comes directly from his seafaring experience, whether in his depiction of ships, ports, or naval battles. His etchings of ships and views of Paris would inspire later artists such as the 19th-century French etcher Charles Meryon.


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Prints and Drawings


Reinier Nooms, called Zeeman


Merchant Ships


Netherlands (Artist's nationality)




Etching in black on ivory laid paper


Image: 11.6 × 12.3 cm (4 5/8 × 4 7/8 in.); Plate: 12.2 × 20.7 cm (4 13/16 × 8 3/16 in.); Sheet: 14.8 × 23.2 cm (5 7/8 × 9 3/16 in.)

Credit Line

The Wallace L. DeWolf and Joseph Brooks Fair Collections

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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