The Dutch national museum has recently digitized and published much of their collection to online audiences. So I decided to look for old prints of Armenian life and discovered some very interesting images from the Dutch colonial era. We can see Armenian merchants in Holland, but also Armenian life in the Ottoman empire. Some displays prosperity, while other tragedy, provide further evidence of Armenian prosecutions predating the Genocide by hundreds of years.
Bellow you can see the prints that I’ve selected from the Dutch collection. I’ve shared some paintings of Armenian life earlier on this blog, you can find it HERE. For those who’d like do their own research, you can visit the website of the Dutch national museum HERE.
Note that I am sharing these prints here in full quality so the file sizes are quite large which might increase your loading time.
Great post. And : the Armenian church is still there -in Amsterdam- ( in part because it was declared a dutch national monument, and is protected by the dutch national heritage legislation). The church has changed very little on the outside.
What is funny is that in the captions of the drawings it shows that ( in the 17th and 18th century) the Armenians were referred to as “men from Constantinopel” as wel as “Persian(anic)s” and that “Armenia stretches from the Euphrates river to the Caspian sea and the mount Caucasus”.
I noticed the armenian alphabet–similar, but not not as the one we have today. Can anyone clarify the discrepancy?
I am sure that Jan van Luycken tried to reproduce the Armenian as well as he could but if e.g. you look at his reproduction of the Chinese characters, it’s clear that he had great difficulty in exactly copying these ( for him ) foreign and exotic characters ( both the Chinese and Armenian.) Furthermore : Van Luyken was the draughtsman/painter who made these drawings based on notes and drawings by other people. He was was not the initiator of these drawings.