17th century camp:

the feast of Sint Nicholas domestic celebrations, Jan Havicksz. Steen, 1665 - 1668, Rijksmuseum Amsterdam
click image dor high resolution view or download from Rijksmuseum

The feast of St Nicholas takes place on December 5th in the Netherlands, it has been celebrated in the same way for centuries.
Good children receive gifts from the saint. The little girl in the foreground, for instance, has a bucket full of treats.
Naughty children, like the wailing boy at the left, get only a switch (a bundle of twigs) in their shoe. To be used to ship their bare asses:

Jan Steen was a born storyteller. He always succeeded in incorporating all of the elements of the popular culture in his pictures:

Adolf and Catharina Croeser, Known as ‘The Burgomaster of Delft and his Daughter’, Jan Havicksz. Steen, 1655
Legs wide apart and his right arm akimbo, Croeser sits on the stoop of his house on the Oude Delft canal in Delft.
His thirteen-year-old daughter Catharina looks straight out at us. Jan Steen included a narrative element in this portrait:
a poor woman and child beg for alms from the wealthy grain merchant.
In 1657, just two years after this portrait was made, Croeser stood surety for Steen, who was seriously in debt.

View of Houses in Delft, Known as ‘The Little Street’, Johannes Vermeer, ca. 1658
This painting of a quiet street with a few figures occupies an exceptional place in Vermeer’s oeuvre.
Straight angles give the composition balance, while the triangle of the sky introduces a sense of dynamism.
The old walls, coarse bricks, and white plasterwork are almost palpable.
Vermeer nonetheless took some liberties with reality, such as the oversized green shutters.

and with that Vermeer work I close the chapter of 17th century bourgeois life in my hometown Delft.

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