Thérèse Schwartze: Three Inmates of the Orphanage at Amsterdam (1885)

(Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

A painting by the Dutch female artist Thérèse Schwartze (1851-1918). These three girls are orphans, their black/ red dress identifies them as orphans from the citizens orphanage at Amsterdam (in Dutch 'Burgerweeshuis') located at the Kalverstraat (today the Amsterdam Museum is situated here). Originally the orphanage founded by the city council of Amsterdam around 1520 and was located near the Kalverstraat and the Rokin. The orphans were moved in 1578 to a former monastery at the Kalverstraat were they stayed until 1960. This orphanage was financially independent because it received the property which belonged to the monastery. Not every orphan was allowed to come here: parents had to be a citizen of Amsterdam, children from poor people and foundlings were not admitted. The orphans that were admitted stayed here until a certain age and had to learn a profession. Painting from 1885.