Pieter Claesz specialised in well-balanced still-lifes with little colour, and this painting is a good example. Despite his limited palette, Claesz succeeded in achieving a convincing depiction of different materials, like the brass of the candlestick, the pewter of the snuffer and the wine in the drinking glass. The way he painted the reflection of the candlelight is remarkable.
right of centre, on the book: PC Ao 1627 PC in ligature
James A. Butti Gallery, Edinburgh; Bukowski Gallery, Stockholm, shortly after 1930; Oscar Hedberg (1885-1966), Stockholm; S. Nijstad Gallery, The Hague; acquired with the support of the Rembrandt Association, 1961