Homo ludens: Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games and the Humanist Educators

Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, 1560, Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna

Picturing more than two hundred children playing over eighty different games, Children’s Games (1560) is one of Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s most intriguing and least understood paintings. The panel resembles little else in the history of art, and as a result it has often evoked ahistorical responses. The following article addresses this problem by grounding Children’s Games in the century in which it was produced and using a range of sixteenth-century sources to develop fresh insights into how the painting might have been received by its original audience. The literature of François Rabelais, pedagogical treatises and colloquies, and Antwerp’s own progressive schooling system all provide examples of contemporary ideals about children and games that can be brought to bear on Children’s Games. After demonstrating the relevance of these sources to Bruegel’s patrons, the author uses the pedagogical literature to measure aspects of Children’s Games, resulting in a more positive reading of the panel than has hitherto been offered. This becomes particularly marked when the painting is placed alongside other sixteenth-century representations of “ideal” and “non-ideal” children.

DOI: 10.5092/jhna.2012.4.2.1

Acknowledgements

This article developed from my doctoral research on Children’s Games and I would like to thank my supervisor Tom Tolley and my examiners Jill Burke and Mark Meadow for their support, as well as the two anonymous readers for the JHNA for their incisive comments.

Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 1 Pieter Bruegel, Children’s Games, 1560, oil on panel, 118 x 161 cm. Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna, inv. no. GG 1017 (artwork in the public domain)
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Knucklebones detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 2 Knucklebones detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Hoop-rolling detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 3 Hoop-rolling detail, Children’s Games
Maerten van Heemskerck,  Twelve-Year-Old Boy, 1531,  Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
Fig. 4 Maerten van Heemskerck, Twelve-Year-Old Boy, 1531, oil on panel, 46.5 x 35 cm. Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, inv. no. 1797 (artwork in the public domain)
Hans and Ambrosius Holbein,  Signboard for a Schoolmaster (reverse), 1516,  Kunstmuseum, Basel
Fig. 5 Hans and Ambrosius Holbein, Signboard for a Schoolmaster (reverse), 1516, pine panel, 55.5 x 65.7 cm. Kunstmuseum, Basel, inv. no. 311 (artwork in the public domain)
Dirk Jacobz. Vellert,  Schoolroom, 1526,  British Museum, London
Fig. 6 Dirk Jacobz. Vellert, Schoolroom, 1526, woodcut, 13.3 x 22.5 cm. British Museum, London, inv. no. AN68174001 (artwork in the public domain)
Pieter Bruegel,  Temperantia (Temperance) (engraved by Philips G,  ca. 1560,  Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam
Fig. 7 Pieter Bruegel, Temperantia (Temperance), ca. 1560, engraving, 22.3 x 28.7 cm (engraved by Philips Galle, published by Hieronymous Cock). Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, inv. no. 15043 (artwork in the public domain)
Pieter Bruegel,  The Ass in School (engraved by Pieter van der He, 1557,  National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
Fig. 8 Pieter Bruegel, The Ass in School, 1557, engraving, 23.4 x 30.3 cm (engraved by Pieter van der Heyden, published by Hieronymous Cock). National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., inv. no. 1958.6.I (artwork in the public domain)
Pieter van der Borcht,  The Cobbler and His Wife as a Teacher (published, 1559,  British Museum, London
Fig. 9 Pieter van der Borcht, The Cobbler and His Wife as a Teacher, 1559, print, 31.5 x 43.5 cm (published by Bartholomaeus de Momper). British Museum, London, inv. no. AN61796001 (artwork in the public domain)
Maerten van Cleve,  Children’s Games,  1560s,  Musée Municipal, Saint Germain-en-Laye, Ducastel collection
Fig. 10 Maerten van Cleve, Children’s Games, 1560s, oil on panel. Musée Municipal, Saint Germain-en-Laye, Ducastel collection, inv. no. 872.1.80 (artwork in the public domain, photograph provided by Bridgeman Art Library)
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Duivekater bread and paper, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 11 Duivekater bread and paper crown detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Saint Nicolas baskets detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 12 Saint Nicolas baskets detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Whitsun bride detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 13 Whitsun bride detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Hobbyhorse detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 14 Hobbyhorse detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Beam detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 15 Beam detail, Children’s Games
  1. 1. Images of life like children playing games decorate the margins of at least eight sixteenth-century Ghent-Bruges manuscripts that predate Children’s Games, however, their small scale and rigid adherence to seasonal iconography mean that they differ significantly from Bruegel’s panel. For discussion of these images in relation to the panel, see Amy Orrock, “Play and Learning in Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games” (PhD diss., University of Edinburgh, 2010), 73–115; and Sandra Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games, Folly and Chance,” Art Bulletin 63 (1981): 447–75, Appendix II. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  2. 2. The first reference to Children’s Games appears in the account book of Archduke Ernst, governor general of the Habsburg Netherlands 1593–95. In an entry dated July 16, 1594, the archduke’s secretary recorded that the painting was supplied, along with several other works by Bruegel, by the art dealer Hane van Wijk. Algemeen Rijksarchief, Brussels, Manuscrits Divers No. 2924, fol. 148v. See A. Coremans, “L’Archduc Ernest, sa cour, ses dépenses, 1593–95,” Comptes rendus des séances de la Commission R. d’histoire 13 (Brussels, 1848): 85–147; and Iain Buchanan, “The Collection of Niclaes Jonghelinck: II. The ‘Months’ by Pieter Bruegel the Elder,” Burlington Magazine 132 (1990): 541–49, 550 n. 11. Children’s Gamesis now in a delicate state. It was cradled in the first half of the nineteenth century, and problems with the heating system in the newly constructed Kunsthistoriches Museum in Vienna caused blisters to appear on the surface of the painting. Conservation work to consolidate these blisters was carried out between 1892 and 1929, but since then there has been no major conservation work on the panel and the painting has not been subject to technical analysis using modern techniques such as infrared reflectography, pigment analysis, or dendrochronology. For these insights I am grateful to Dr. Karl Schütz, Head of Paintings, Kunsthistoriches Museum.

  3. 3. Numbered catalogues of the motifs in Children’s Games appear in Gustav Glück, Peter Bruegel the Elder (New York, 1937), Victor de Meyere, De Kinderspelen van Pieter Bruegel den Oude (Antwerp: Gevaert Photo-Productien, 1941), and Jeanette Hills, Das Kinderspelbild von Pieter Bruegel d. Ä, 1560 (Vienna, 1957). These catalogues were collated by Hindman in “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games” Appendix I. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145 Broader folkloristic studies of games which repeatedly reference Children’s Games include Alfons de Cock and Isidoor Teirlinck, Kinderspel en kinderlust in Zuid-Nederland, 8 vols. (Ghent: Koninklijke Vlaamsche Academie voor Taal-en Letterkunde, 1902–8), Johanna W. P. Drost, Het Nederlansch Kinderspel voor de 17e eeuw (The Hague, 1914), and Iona and Peter Opie, Children’s Games in Street and Playground (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1969).

  4. 4. For Christian von Mechel, the eighteenth-century curator of the Imperial Collections, Children’s Games represented “Spring” in a series of the four seasons, while for Charles de Tolnay it represented “Summer”; both interpretations have since been rejected. Chrétien de Mechel, Catalogue des tableaux de la Galerie Impériale et Royale de Vienne (Basel, 1784), nos. 61–64; Charles de Tolnay, Pierre Bruegel l’ancien, 2 vols. (Brussels: Nouvelle société d’éditions, 1935), 25–26.The suggestion by Erica Tietze-Conrat that the panel might represent the first painting, Infantia, in an incomplete series of the Ages of Man also seems unlikely. E. Tietze-Conrat, “Pieter Bruegels Kinderspiele,” Oudheidkundig Jaarboek 2 (1933): 127–30.  

  5. 5. Following a Panofskian model, those who move beyond the primary (preiconographical) and secondary (iconographical) modes of identifying and naming the games and attempt to synthesize how the representations might be understood within Bruegel’s own milieu can be described as the “iconologists.” Erwin Panfosky, Studies in Iconology: Humanistic Themes in the Art of the Renaissance, rev. ed. (New York: Harper & Row, 1972), 3–32.

  6. 6. For examples of how emblems have been used to decode Dutch paintings, see Tot Lering en Vermaak: Betekenissen van Hollandse Genrevoorstellingen uit de Zeventiende eeuw, ed. Eddy de Jongh, exh. cat. (Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 1976).

  7. 7. Wolfgang Stechow, “Homo Bulla,” Art Bulletin 20 (1938): 227–28 http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3046578; Carl Gustav Stridbeck, Bruegelstudien (Stockholm, 1956), 184–91; Seymour Slive, “Realism and Symbolism in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Painting,” Daedalus 91 (1962–63): 469–500; and Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games”, 462–69. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145A number of kinderspelen prints attributed to Adriaen van de Venne and Jan van de Velde II and found in seventeenth-century emblem books seem to have been directly inspired by Children’s Games.See John Landwehr, Emblem Books in the Low Countries 1554–1946: A Bibliography (Utrecht: Haentjens Dekker and Gumbert, 1970), nos. 80–125; and Simon Schama, The Embarrassment of Riches: An Interpretation of Dutch Culture in the Golden Age (London: Collins, 1987), 507–11.

  8. 8. Notable voices of dissent in the moralizing literature on Children’s Games have been Edward Snow, Inside Bruegel: The Play of Images in Children’s Games (New York: North Point, 1997) and Klaus Demus in Pieter Bruegel the Elder at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, ed. Wilfried Seipel (Vienna: Kunsthistoriches Museum, 1999).

  9. 9. Information on the patronage of the Proverbs and Carnival and Lent is similarly scant, but visually the three works have been described as a “set of collections,” together forming an “atlas of human culture.” Joseph Koerner, “Unmasking the World: Bruegel’s Ethnography,” Common Knowledge 10, no. 2 (2004): 240. http://dx.doi.org/10.1215/0961754X10-2-220

  10. 10. Walter S. Gibson, Bruegel (London: Thames & Hudson, 1977), 65–89; David Kunzle, “Bruegel’s Proverb Painting and the World Upside Down,” Art Bulletin 59 (1977): 197–202. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307
    /3049631
    On the Theatrum Mundi in the sixteenth century, see Lynda G. Christian, Theatrum Mundi: The History of an Idea (New York: Garland, 1987) and Ann Blair, The Theatre of Nature: Jean Bodin and Renaissance Science (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1997), chapter 5.

  11. 11. Mark Meadow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’sNetherlandish Proverbs and the Practice of Rhetoric (Zwolle: Waanders, 2002); Ethan M. Kavaler, Pieter Bruegel: Parables of Order and Enterprise (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 111–48.

  12. 12. The only known exceptions to this group of “merchant patrons” are the learned geographer Abraham Ortelius, who owned a small grisaille by the artist, and Cardinal Granvelle, who owned a number of works by Bruegel.

  13. 13. On the collections of Noirot and Cheeus, see Luc Smolderen, “Tableaux de Jermone Bosch, de Pierre Bruegel l’Ancien et de Frans Floris disperses en vente publique a la Monnaie d’Anvers en 1572,” Revue Belge d’Archéologie et d’Histoire de l’art 6 (1995): 33–41; Claudia Goldstein, “Artifacts of Domestic Life: Bruegel’s Paintings in the Flemish Home,” Nederlands Kunsthistorisch Jaarboek 51 (2000): 174–93; and Walter S. Gibson, Pieter Bruegel and the Art of Laughter (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006), 67–76.

  14. 14. Staadsarchief, Antwerp, Tresorij 1711, no. 1551, February 21, 1565. See Jean Denucé, De Antwerpsche Konstkamers: Inventarissen van kunstverzamelingen te Antwerpen in de 16e en 17e eeuwen (Antwerp: De Sikkel, 1932), 5.

  15. 15. Buchanan, “The Collection of Niclaes Jonghelinck.”

  16. 16. Goldstein, “Artifacts of Domestic Life”; Gibson, Pieter Bruegel and the Art of Laughter, 106–16; Mark Meadow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’sNetherlandish Proverbs, 153–57.

  17. 17. Karel van Mander, The Lives of the Illustrious Netherlandish and German Painters, from the First Edition of the ‘Schilder-boeck’ (1603–4), trans. and ed. Hessel Miedema (Doornspijk: Davaco, 1994), 1:134–37.

  18. 18. Edward Snow, “‘Meaning’ in Children’s Games: On the Limitations of the Iconographic Approach to Bruegel,” Representations 2 (1983), 43. http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/rep.1983.2.1.99p0004c

  19. 19. Margaret A. Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process (Farnham, U.K.: Ashgate, 2010), 70–100. Unfortunately Sullivan’s work appeared too late to be considered in my doctoral research.

  20. 20. Ibid., 75.

  21. 21. Sullivan concludes: “while many of the activities in Children’s Games are free of any pejorative associations a relatively large number follow the satirists in taking a pessimistic view of human behaviour.” Ibid., 87.

  22. 22. François Rabelais, The Complete Works of François Rabelais, trans. Donald M. Frame (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991), 50–54.

  23. 23. Published after Rabelais’s death, the book made extensive use of figures taken from Bruegel’s designs for the print series the Seven Deadly Sins.Michel Jeanneret, Les Songes Drolatiques du Pantagruel (Geneva: Librairie Droz, 2004); Walter S. Gibson, “Bosch’s Dreams: A Response to the Art of Bosch in the Sixteenth Century,” Art Bulletin 74 (1992): 205–18 http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3045869; Gibson, Bruegel and the Art of Laughter, 28–38.

  24. 24. Nina Serebrennikov used Rabelais to draw attention to the multivalent quality of Bruegel’s paintings, arguing that both men adopted the same rhetorical strategy of allowing the details on the surface of their works to proliferate; effectively complicating meaning by inviting different interpretations. Nina E. Serebrennikov, “On the Surface of Dulle Griet: Pieter Bruegel in the Context of Rabelais,” in Rabelais in Context: Proceedings of the 1991 Vanderbilt Conference, ed. Barbara C. Bowen (Birmingham, Ala.: Summa Publications, 1993), 158–78. Mark Meadow similarly cited the work of Montaigne, Shakespeare, and Rabelais when discussing the “habits of mind” engendered by Northern copia. Meadow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s Netherlandish Proverbs, 25.

  25. 25. A parallel with Netherlandish Proverbs exists in chapter 21 of Rabelais’s Cinq Livre (1564), which has the officers of the Queen Quinte-Essence wildly acting out proverbs; Bruegel’s Battle Between Carnival and Lent is also reminiscent of the antagonism between Quaresmeprenant, a monster with Lenten characteristics, and the Andouilles (tripe sausages) in Rabelais’s QuartLivre (1552). See Wilhelm Fraenger, “Das Bild der Niederländischen Sprichwörter Pieter Bruegels Verkerte Welt,” Castrum Peregrini 336 (1999): 5–83; and Samuel Kinser, Rabelais’s Carnival: Text, Context, Metatext (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1990), 47–51. 

  26. 26. Snow, Inside Bruegel, 33. Although never explored in detail, these parallels have not gone unnoticed by scholars. See Demus in Pieter Bruegel the Elder at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna; Jean-Pierre Vanden Branden, “Les jeux d’enfants de Pierre Bruegel, in Les Jeux à la Renaissance: Actes du XXIII e Colloque internationale d’etudes humanistes,” ed. Philippe Ariès et Jean-Claude Margolin (Paris, 1982), 499–524; and Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,” 459 n. 82. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  27. 27. I borrow this phrase from Mark Meadow, who uses it to describe both the creation and reception of collections such as Bruegel’s Netherlandish Proverbs. Meadow views the habits of mind of the period as rooted in Northern humanist educational techniques, specifically the “notebook system,” which defined rhetorical practice. Meadow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s Netherlandish Proverbs, 83–97. I argue similarly that humanist educational practices would have underpinned the inception and reception of sixteenth-century game collections such as that found in Rabelais’s Gargantua and Bruegel’s Children’s Games.  

  28. 28. Henri Pirenne, “Rabelais dans le Pays-Bas,” Revue des Etudes Rabelaisiennes 4 (1906): 224–25; Marcel de Greve, “Rabelais au pays de Brueghel: Réflexions sur la Popularité de Rabelais dans le Pays-Bas du XVIe siècle,” Bibliothèque d’Humanisme et Renaissance 17 (1955): 171–72.

  29. 29. Leon Voet, The Golden Compasses: A History and Evaluation of the Printing and Publishing of the Officiana Plantiniana at Antwerp, trans. Raymond H. Kay, 2 vols. (Amsterdam: Vangendt, 1969).

  30. 30. See Leon Voet and J. Voet-Grisolle, The Plantin Press (1555–1589): A Bibliography of the Works Printed and Published by Christopher Plantin at Antwerp and Leiden, 6 vols. (Amsterdam: Van Hoeve, 1980–83), 1:2521–56; and Alison Saunders, “Franco-Dutch Publishing Relations: The Case of Christopher Plantin,” in The Stone of Alciato: Literature and Visual Culture in the Low Countries, ed. M. van Vaeck, H. Brems, and G. H. M. Claassens (Leuven: Peeters, 2003), 999–1017.

  31. 31. Dutch: 319; French: 308; Spanish: 39; German: 15; English: 5. Voet, The Plantin Press: A Bibliography, 1:2521–56.

  32. 32. Wouter Nijhoff and M. E. Kronenberg, Nederlandsche Bibliographie van 1500 tot 1540, 3 vols. (S’ Gravenhage: Nijhoff, 1923–61); Voet, The Plantin Press: A Bibliography.

  33. 33. Plantin Archive, Franç., no. 35. Journal 1558–61.

  34. 34. Folios 1r, 29r, 42v, 43r, 55r, 56r (Rabelais); folios 34r, 68r, 73r, 77v (Pantagruel); folio 82r (Rabelais pantagruel).

  35. 35. The veuve Pissart was active in Ath in the 1560s and can be identified with the widow of the Ath printer Joannes Masius. See Anne Rouzet, Dictionnaire des imprimeurs, libraries et éditeurs des XVe et XVIe siècles  dans les limites géographiques de la Belgique actuelle (Nieuwkoop: De Graf, 1975), 177.

  36. 36. Plantin Archive, Franç., no. 44. Journal 1566. Folios 2r, 7v, and 90v.

  37. 37. See Stephen Rawles and M. A. Screech, A New Rabelais Bibliography: Editions of Rabelais before 1626 (Geneva: Droz, 1987), nos. 3, 58, 135, and 136. 

  38. 38. Plantin’s earliest association with Cock can be traced to prints sent to the Parisian bookseller Martin Le Jeune in 1556, and in 1559 the two men collaborated on The Funeral Procession of Charles V. Cock was one of the twenty-eight guests invited to the wedding of Plantin’s daughter in 1565. Timothy Riggs,Hieronymous Cock (1510–1570): Printmaker and Publisher in Antwerp at the Sign of the Four Winds (New York: Garland, 1977), 64.

  39. 39. Compiled between 1573 and 1596 Ortelius’s Album Amicorum contains 134 entries and provides a valuable insight into the intellectual life of Antwerp in the sixteenth century. Plantin and Bruegel appear alongside prominent intellectuals, artists, and statesman, including John Dee, Gerard Mercator, Justus Lipsius, and Emmanuel van Meteren. See Album Amicorum:Abraham Ortelius, ed. Jean Puraye (Amsterdam, 1969), folios 12v and 73r. For more on the social connections between Bruegel, Plantin, and Ortelius, see Margaret Sullivan, Bruegel’s Peasants: Art and Audience in the Northern Renaissance (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994), 5–13.

  40. 40. In the process of assembling maps for his great atlas Ortelius amassed a long list of ancient geographical names which he continued to edited and published throughout the latter half of the sixteenth century, first with ten thousand entries as the Synonymia Geographia (1579) and then with thirty thousand entries as the Thesaurus Geographicus (1587). See Peter Meurer, “Synonymia-Thesaurus-Nomenclator: Ortelius’s Dictionaries of Ancient Geographical Names,” in AbrahamOrtelius and the First Atlas: Essays Commemorating the Quadricentennial of His Death 1598–1998, ed. Marcel van den Broecke (The Netherlands: HES, 1998), 331–46.

  41. 41. G. L. Michaud, “Luis Vives and Rabelais’ Pedagogy,” PMLA 38 (1923): 419–14 http://dx.doi.org
    /10.2307/457182
    ; Rita Guerlac, “Vives and the Education of Gargantua,” Etudes Rabelaisiennes 11 (1974): 63–72; Richard Berrong, Rabelais and Bakhtin: Popular Culture in Gargantua and Pantagruel (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1986), 22–23.

  42. 42. This statement appears in De utilitate Colloquiorum (The Usefulness of the Colloquies). First printed in 1526, the text was included at or near the end of subsequent editions of the colloquies and formed both a defense and an apology for the content of the colloquies (most especially those which commented upon religion). Desiderius Erasmus, Collected Works of Erasmus, ed. Craig R. Thompson (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1978), vol. 40, “De utilitate Colloquiorum,” 1098.

  43. 43. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 24, “De ratione studii.”

  44. 44. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 25, “De civilitate.”

  45. 45. See Franz Bierlaire, “Erasmus at School: The De Civilitate Morum Puerilium Libellus,” in Essays on the Works of Erasmus, ed. Richard L. de Molen (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1978), 239–46.

  46. 46. Heemskerck was based in Haarlem, but, like Bruegel, he had a strong relationship with Hieronymous Cock, supplying the Antwerp publisher with 176 designs for prints during the period 1550–70. Timothy A. Riggs, “Bruegel and His Publisher,” in Pieter Bruegel und Seine Welt, ed. Otto von Simpson and Hans Mielke (Berlin: Mann, 1979), 165.

  47. 47. The text was dedicated to Jan de Neve, rector of Louvain university. Jan Baptist Bedaux and Rudi Ekkart, eds. Pride and Joy: Children’s Portraits in the Netherlands, 1500–1700, exh. cat. (Ghent: Ludion, 2001), no. 4.

  48. 48. Juan Luis Vives, Vives on Education: A Translation of the ‘De Tradendis Disciplinis’ of Juan Luis Vives, ed. Foster Watson (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1913). Vives’s other educational works included the Adversus pseudodialectricos (1519); De institutione feminae Christianae (1523), De ratione studii puerilis (1523) and the Introductio ad sapientiam (1524).

  49. 49. Vives, Vives on Education, 121; Guerlac, “Vives and the Education of Gargantua,” 68.

  50. 50. These collections were each published in over a hundred editions. See Erasmus, Collected Works, vols. 39 and 40; Juan Luis Vives, Tudor School-boy Life: The Dialogues of Juan Luis Vives, ed. Foster Watson (London: Dent, 1908); Maturin Corderius, Corderius dialogues translated grammatically, trans. John Brindsley (London, 1636); Foster Watson “Maturinus Corderius: Schoolmaster at Paris, Bordeaux and Geneva, in the Sixteenth Century,” School Review 12 (1904): 281–98 http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/434580; and Elizabeth K. Hudson, “The Colloquies of Maturin Cordier: Images of Calvinist School Life and Thought,” Sixteenth Century Journal 9 (1978): 56–78. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/2539446

  51. 51. Examples of less well-known colloquies include: Andreas Huendern, Latinum idioma (1501); Laurentius Corvinus, Latinum idioma (1503); Collocutiones duorim puerorum de rebus puerilibus as invicem loquentium (ca. 1503); Petrus Mosellanus, Paedologia (1518); Christophorus Hegendorffinus, Dialogi pueriles (1520); Hadrianus Barlandus, Dialogi ad profligandam e scholis barbariem utilissimi (1524); Hermannus Schottenius, Confabulationes tironum litterariorum (1525); Sebaldus Heyden, Formulae puerilium colloquiorum (1528); Jonas Philologus, Dialogi (1529); Jacobus Zovitius, Colloquia (date unknown); Sebastien Castellion, Dialogi sacri (1543); Nicolaus Winmannus, Dialogi (1544), and Martinus Duncanus, Praetextata latine loquendi ratio (1552). See Robert Francis Seybolt, Renaissance Student Life: The Paedologia of Petrus Mosellanus (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1927).  

  52. 52. Watson, “Maturinus Corderius: Schoolmaster at Paris, Bordeaux, and Geneva.” http://dx.doi.org
    /10.1086/434580

  53. 53. Thomas Elyot, The Book Named the Governor, ed. Stanford E. Lehmberg (London: Dent, 1962), 60–64.

  54. 54. Ascham lists riding, tilting, weaponry, vaulting, running, leaping, wrestling, swimming, dancing, singing, playing instruments, hawking, hunting, and tennis. Roger Ascham, The Schoolmaster, ed. Lawrence V. Ryan (New York: Cornell University Press, 1963), 62–63.

  55. 55. Richard L. de Molen, Richard Mulcaster and Educational Reform in the Renaissance (Nieuwkoop: De Graaf, 1991).

  56. 56. Antwerp saw the first publication of Vives’s De tradendis disciplinis in 1531 and Erasmus’s works were also widely available in the Netherlands in the decades prior to the creation of Children’s Games, with editions of the Colloquies printed in Antwerp in the 1520’s and 1530’s and the De Civilitate translated into nederlandsch in 1559. Erasmus’s Colloquies were repeatedly banned by the faculty of theology of the University of Paris during the 1550’s and were finally placed on the papal Index of Prohibited Books in 1564, but the genre continued to thrive, with Antwerp witnessing the publication of an expanded edition of Vives’s Linguae latina exercitatio in 1552 and Cordier’s Colloquiorum scholasticorum in 1577 (Plantin Press).

  57. 57. Nadine Orenstein, Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Drawings and Prints, exh. cat. (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2001), nos. 40, 41, 76, and 77.

  58. 58. On the humanist educators and physical punishment, see Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process, 76 n. 90.

  59. 59. It states: “Al reyst den esele ter scholen om leeren – Ist eenen esele. Hy en sal gheen peert weder keeren” (Although the ass goes to school in order to learn, if it is an ass, it will not return a horse). The message is repeated in both Flemish and Latin in the lower margin of the engraving. The Latin inscription represents a slight variation by mentioning Paris, a center of learning that would have been familiar to European humanists: parisios stolidvm si qvis transmittat asellvm. si hic est asinvs non erit illic eqvvs(If you send a stupid ass to Paris, if it is an ass here, it will not be a horse there). Orenstein, Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Drawings and Prints, 142–44.

  60. 60. Picturing a chaotic agglomeration of children, each intent on their own activity and set beside or within the rustic vernacular space of a barn, the atmosphere in many of the seventeenth-century “unruly schoolrooms” is similar to that of Children’s Games; however, the seventeenth-century unruly schoolrooms were all produced too late to be directly comparable to Bruegel’s panel. See examples in Mary Frances Durantini, The Child in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Painting (Epping, U.K.: Bowker, 1983), chapter 2.

  61. 61. New Hollstein, Peeter van der Borcht, compiled by Hans and Ursula Mielke, edited by Ger Luijten (Rotterdam: Sound and Vision, 2004), no. 178; Walter S. Gibson, “Some Flemish Popular Prints from Hieronymous Cock and His Contemporaries,” Art Bulletin 60 (1978): 673–81. http://dx.doi.org
    /10.2307/3049845

  62. 62. Translation taken from Gibson, “Some Flemish Popular Prints,” 677.  http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3049845

  63. 63. Jean Denucé, De Antwerpsche Konstkamers, doc. 10, 14–27; Erik Durverger, Antwerpse kunstinventarissen uit de zeventiende eeuw (Brussels, 1984), 1:299–311.

  64. 64. The version discussed here is in the Ducastel Collection, Saint Germaine-en-Laye. Other versions exist in the Kunstmuseum Stuttgart (previously in the collection Heinz Kisters at Kreulingen, Switzerland); the Collection Vittorio Duca, Milan, and the Isaac Delgado Museum of Art, New Orleans.G. T. Faggin “De genre-schilder Marten van Cleef,”Oud-Holland 29 (1965): 34–46; Georges Marlier, Pierre Bruegel le Jeune (Brussels: Fink, 1969), 350–51.

  65. 65. For an illuminating introduction to the history and material culture of education in the Netherlands in this period, see Annemarieke Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard: The Daily Practice of Medieval and Renaissance Education (Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2008). See also P. Th. F. M. Boekholt and E. P. de Booy, Geschiedenis van de school in Nederland vanaf de middeleeuwen tot aan de huidige tijd (Assen: Van Gorcum, 1987) and R. R. Post, Scholen en onderwijs in Nederland gedurende de Middeleeuwen (Utrecht: Het Spectrum, 1954)

  66. 66. Guicciardini, cited in Guido Marnef, Antwerp in the Age of Reformation: Underground Protestantism in a Commercial Metropolis, 1550-1577, trans. J. C. Grayson (Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press, 1996), 33.

  67. 67. The chapter of Our Lady’s church was responsible for running the papenschool or ‘priests school’ located behind the cathedral on Milk Street. In 1521 three new church schools were set up, attached to the parishes of St. Walburg’s, St. Joris and St. Jacob respectively. In 1529 a fifth school was added, connected to the new parish church of St. Andries.

  68. 68. Founded in 1530 at the request of Antwerp’s free schoolmasters, the organization and membership of the Guild of St. Ambrose is detailed in a two-volume Rekenboeck (account book) kept by the guild between 1530 and 1634 and preserved in the city archives at Antwerp. See Caroline Bourland, The Guild of Saint Ambrose, or Schoolmasters’ Guild of Antwerp, 1529–1579 (Northampton, Mass.: Dept of History of Smith College, 1951). For Antwerp’s free schools in the wider context of educational developments in the Netherlands, see Marnef, Antwerp in the Age of Reformation;John J. Murray, Antwerp in the Age of Plantin and Brueghel (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1970), 98; Leon Voet, Antwerp, the Golden Age: The Rise and Glory of the Metropolis in the Sixteenth Century (Antwerp: Mercatorfonds, 1973), 400; and Karel Davids, “The Book-keeper’s Tale. Learning Merchant Skills in the Northern Netherlands in the Sixteenth Century,” in Education and Learning in the Netherlands, 1400–1600, ed. K. Goudriaan, J. van Moolenbroek, and A. Tervoort (Leiden: Brill, 2004), 235–51.

  69. 69. The woodcut has been described as a documentary representation of a Protestant school according to the recommendations of the leaders of the Reformation, however, in 1526 Vellert was serving his second turn as dean of the Antwerp Guild of St. Luke, and it therefore seems more likely that the woodcut pictures one of Antwerp’s free schools. E. S. Jacobwitz and S. L. Stepanek, Lucas van Leyden and his Contemporaries, exh. cat. (National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1983), no. 140; A. E. Popham, “The Engravings and Woodcuts of Dirick Vellert,” Print Collector’s Quarterly 12 (1925): 343–68.

  70. 70. A city ordinance issued in Antwerp in 1439 read: “The teachers in the Flemish (Dietsche) schools shall teach boys no more Latin than their prayers, creed and seven psalms. When they are ready to study Donatus, they must go to the priests’ school.” Bourland, The Guild of Saint Ambrose, 2. By 1546 a second ordinance appears to update this, stating that after students had learned the alphabet, Pater noster, and other pious works they could proceed, learning from a list of thirty-five works in Latin and fifteen in Greek. Roger H. Marijnissen, Bruegel: Tout l’oeuvre peint et dessiné (Antwerp: Fonds Mercator, 1988), 80; and by 1576 Latin and Greek were included among the list of subjects taught in the schools of the Guild of St. Ambrose. Bourland, The Guild of St. Ambrose, 7.

  71. 71. Marnef, Antwerp in the Age of Reformation,33–37.

  72. 72. Puraye, Album Amicorum, folios 4v, 7r, 104v, 105r, and 117v. Ad Meskens, “Liaisons dangereuses: Peeter Heyns en Abraham Ortelius,” De Gulden Passer Yearbook 76–77 (1998–99): 95–108; Hubert Meeus, “Abraham Ortelius et Peeter Heyns,” in Abraham Ortelius: Cartographe et Humaniste, ed. R. J. Karrow, et al. (Turnhout: Brepols, 1998), 152–59.

  73. 73. For Heyns’s own works, see Hubert Meeus,  “Peeter Heyns, A ‘French Schoolmaster,’” in Grammaire et enseignement du français, 1500–1700, ed. J. de Clerq, P. Swiggers, and N. Lioce (Leuven: Peeters, 2000), 301–-316.

  74. 74. Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process, 76.

  75. 75. The register and finances of the school are preserved in two books in the Plantin-Moretus Museum: Manuscript M 394 and M 240, and are reproduced in Maurits Sabbe, Peeter Heyns en de Nimfen uit den Lauwerboom (Antwerp, 1934), 20–21.

  76. 76. Murray, Antwerp in the Age of Plantin and Brueghel, 101.

  77. 77. For a bibliography of works published by Antwerp’s schoolmasters, see H. L. V. de Groote, “De zestiende-eeuwse Antwerpse schoolmeesters,” Bijdragen tot de Geschiedenis bijzonderlijk van het oude hertogdom Brabant 50 (1967): 179–318, and 51 (1968): 5–52.On Heyns’s ABC, see Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process, 77.

  78. 78. Admitted to the Guild of St. Ambrose in 1548, Meurier served as its dean three times. For a bibliography of his works, many of which were printed by Plantin, see Willem de Vreese, “Gabriel Meurier,” in Bibliographie nationale publié par l’Académie royale des sciences, des lettres et des beaux-arts de Belgique (Brussels, 1897), 14:700–763. See also David Shaw, “The Lost First Editions of Gabriel Meurier’s Colloques ou nouvelle invention de propos familiers printed by Plantin, 1556–7,” Quaerendo 29 (1999): 41–51; and Bert van Selm, “Some Early Editions of Gabriel Meurier’s School-Books,” Quaerendo 3 (1973): 217–25. http://dx.doi.org/10.1163
    /157006973X00228

  79. 79. In addition to the poems, Meurier’s text appears frequently in Heyn’s account book. Sabbe, Peeter Heyns, 49. On this text, see Evelyne Beriot-Salvadore, “L’Emploi du temps d’une écolière à Anvers, en 1580, d’après La Guirlande des Jeunes filles, par Gabriel Meurier,” Bibliographie d’humanisme et Renaissance 44 (1982): 533–44.

  80. 80. Erasmus’s colloquy De lusu (Sport) opens with a boy declaring that: “Inclination, the weather, and the season have long been inviting us to play,” and the boys quickly hatch a plan to convince the master to let them. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 39, 83.

  81. 81. Elyot, The Governor, chapter 17, “Exercises whereby should grow both recreation and profit,” 62.

  82. 82. Mulcaster, Positions, chapter 31, “Of the exercising places,” 119–20.

  83. 83. A filigree spire and onion dome resembling Antwerp’s Cathedral of Our Lady can be made out at the end of the receding street on the right and a black spire similar to that of Saint Michael’s Abbey rises from the roofs on the left. Snow, Inside Bruegel, 84.The gray stretch of river just discernible from the paler gray of the sky at the upper left of the painting might be understood as a third reference to Antwerp, recalling the broad surface of the Scheldt.

  84. 84. One of the protagonists in Vives’s dialogue Leges ludi (Laws of Play) describes how: “We have a teacher Anneus who used to allow card-playing at festival times.” Vives, Tudor School-boy Life, Dialogue 22, 204. In sixteenth-century Latin schools it is estimated that at least one hundred days per year were holidays, including the months of July and August and Holy Days and feasts specific to the school, city or country. Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard, 26.

  85. 85. Details around the bonfire, including the children collecting firewood and carrying aloft forked sticks with paper attached, all correspond to recorded celebrations for Saint John’s Day and the midsummer solstice on June 23 and 24, and the related Feasts of Saints Peter and Paul on June 29. The children playing in the river may be a further reference to Saint John the Baptist, or Sint jan de wasscher as he was called in Flanders.Charles de Tolnay, Pierre Bruegel l’ancien, 25–26; Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,”420–53 http://dx.doi.org
    /10.2307/3050145
    ; Otto von Reinsberg-Düringsfeld, Calendrier Belge: Fêtes religieuses et civiles, usages croyances et practiques populaires des Belges anciens et modernes (Brussels, 1891), 1:417.

  86. 86. “by juxtaposing the representations of marriage and baptism to that of blindman’s buff and by including the blue cloak, Bruegel suggests that folly accompanies life’s major events.” Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,” 452. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  87. 87. See Amy Orrock, “Play Time: Picturing Seasonal Games in the Sixteenth Century.” In Spiritual Temporalities in Late-Medieval Europe, edited by Michael Foster (Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010), 165–96.

  88. 88. Duivekater loaves and paper crowns appear in other representations of winter festivities, including Sebastian Vranckx’s Winter (Belgium, private collection) and Jan Steen’s Feast of Saint Nicholas (Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum). Vranckx’s Winteris reproduced in A. A. Wagenberg-ter Hoeven, “The Celebration of Twelfth Night in Netherlandish Art,” Simiolus 22 (1994): 65–96, fig. 23. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3780806 For Steen’s painting, see Perry H. Chapman, et. al., Jan Steen: Painter and Storyteller (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1996), no. 30

  89. 89. Vives, Tudor School-boy Life, Dialogue 22, 206. 

  90. 90. See the model student Gaspar’s caveat in Erasmus’s colloquy: “After grace is said, I relax, if I have nothing else to do, by playing some wholesome game with companions until it’s time to return from play to school.” Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 39, “Confabulatio pia (The Whole Duty of Youth),” 88–99. Cordier’s colloquies repeatedly stage encounters between masters and pupils where children seek permission to play and are made to recite lessons or complete tasks before it is granted. Corderius dialogues, nos. 8, 54, 55, 57, and 58.

  91. 91. On the symbolism of owls in the sixteenth century, see Piotr P. Pazkiewicz, “Nocturnal Bird of Wisdom: Symbolic Functions of the Owl in Emblems,” Bulletin du Musée national de Varsovie 23 (1982): 56–84. Bruegel’s printed oeuvre offers a typically diverse range of owl symbolism, which frequently seems to be related to antecedents in images by Hieronymus Bosch: owls appear above lustful couples in Bruegel’s Desidia (Sloth) and Patientia (Patience); accompany fools in the Feast of Fools and TheStone Operation; in Gula (Gluttony) an owl is perched atop a windmill, and in the Last Judgment a hybrid owl with a nest of smaller owls on its back is one of several otherworldly creatures who walk the earth. Owls often feature in seventeenth-century unruly schoolrooms, including Pieter de Bloot’s Raucous School (Mainz, Mittelrheinisches Landesmuseum), Adriaen Van Ostade’s School (Paris, Louvre), and Jan Steen’s School for Boys and Girls (Edinburgh, National Gallery of Scotland).

  92. 92. For a discussion of school baskets see Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard, 80-82.

  93. 93. Ibid., 82.

  94. 94. Images which combine writing cases with other symbols of education, such as paddles, rods, school baskets and schoolbags, include the Emblem of a Teacher, c.1500, Rotterdam, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, BdH 14127 and ‘St. Felix killed with school equipment’, Legenda Aurea, Flemish, c.1445-1460. New York, The Morgan Library, M. 672, f. 87r. Writing cases hang from the belts of almost all of the apes in Pieter van der Borcht’s Monkey School (c. 1580). For these images and other examples of sixteenth-century writing cases (both excavated and represented in prints and paintings) see Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard, 77-79.

  95. 95. For this image and more on the Schwartz costume books see Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard, 167-179.

  96. 96. Vives, On Education, 121.

  97. 97. Hudson, “The Colloquies of Maturin Cordier,” 69. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307
    /2539446

  98. 98. Meurier, La Guirlande des jeune filles, 40.

  99. 99. Rabelais, Complete Works, 56. Vives, On Education, 121. There is some evidence that Vives’s ideas were incorporated into schools; the document marking the re-foundation of Canterbury Cathedral and grammar school states: “whatever they are doing in earnest or in play they shall never use any language but Latin or Greek.” Arthur F. Leach, Educational Charters and Documents 598 to 1909 (Cambridge, 1911), 469.

  100. 100. Nicholas Orme, “The Culture of Children in Medieval Society,” Past and Present 148 (1995): 87. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093
    /past/148.1.48

  101. 101. Rabelais, Complete Works, 55–60. In the Governor Elyot similarly describes how Achilles trained his warriors in running and how Julius Caesar’s ability to swim saved his life at the battle of Alexandria. Elyot, Governor, 60–64.

  102. 102. Rabelais, Complete Works, 60.

  103. 103. On this activity, see Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,” 469. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  104. 104. “P” (French piller, “plunder,” Italian pigliar, “to take”) or “A” (Latin accipe, “receive”)–the player takes only the initial amount he or she put into the pot. “N” (Spanish nada, “nothing”) or “R” (French rien)–the player gets nothing from the pot. “J” (Middle French jocque, “game”) or “G” (Italian giuoco)–the player puts additional funds into the pot that are equal to his or her initial amount. “F” (French fors, “out,” Italian fuora, “all is over”)–the player wins the entire pot and ends the game.

  105. 105. The prominence of this game in Bruegel’s painting and its absence in manuscript marginalia were for Hindman evidence that Children’s Games was a presentation of foolish behavior and, more specifically, a negative comment on the role of chance in love and marriage. Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,” 455 .http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  106. 106. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 40, “Kuncklebones or The Game of Tali,” 891–904. One of Erasmus’s sources is recognized to be the humanist scholar Niccolò Leonico Thomaeus’s description of De ludo talari (the game of talari) in his Dialogi (Venice, 1524). 

  107. 107. Pollux’s Onomasticon describes a version of the game where the bones were thrown upward, then the back of the hand outstretched in the hope that they would land on it. Iona and Peter Opie, Children’s Games with Things (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997), 56–72.

  108. 108. Vives, Tudor School-boy Life, Dialogue 22 208. For Vives games with knucklebones were not as bad as those with dice, which were played with by “the worse sort of boys.” Ibid., 204.

  109. 109. Augmented with invented words, proverbial terms, and play chants, Gargantua’s game list is notoriously difficult to decipher; however, scholars believe that the games A la barbe d’oribus, A la boutte foyre, and A rouchemerde involved excrement. Michel Psichari, “Les Jeux de Gargantua (L. I, ch. XXII.),” Revue des Études Rabelaisiennes 6 (1908): 168–69; and 7 (1909): 327. Depictions of other scatological games can be found in a sixteenth-century French manuscript known as the Livre d’heures de la famille Ango (Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, MS. NAL 392).  

  110. 110. Oxford, Bodleian Library, Douce Ms 276, fols. 118r and 35r; Jacques Stella, Games and Pastimes of Childhood, trans. Stanley Appelbaum (New York: Dover, 1969), no. 34.

  111. 111. For this print see Orenstein, Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Drawings and Prints, no. 79.

  112. 112. Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process, 81.

  113. 113. Michiel viewed the breviary in Cardinal Grimani’s Venetian palace in 1521 and is the earliest known source to mention the work. He described how the most praised of the leaves “are the twelve months, among them February, where a boy urinating in the snow turns it yellow and the surrounding countryside is frozen and covered in snow.” (Lodansi in esso sopratutto li 12 mesi, et tralli altri il febbraro, ove uno fanciullo orinando nella neve, le fa gialla et il paese ivi è tutto nevoso et giacciato). Mario Salmi and Gian Lorenzo Mellini, The Grimani Breviary: Reproduced from the Illuminated Manuscript Belonging to the Biblioteca Marciana (London: Thames & Hudson, 1972), 253. Several decades later the scene was reproduced in reverse in a prayerbook made for a member of the Portuguese royal family (Lisbon, Museu Nacional de Arte Antigua, Ms. 13, fol. 2v); and the Hennessy Hours (Brussels, Bibliothèque royale de Belgique, Ms. II 159; fol. 2v).

  114. 114. “To repress the need to urinate is injurious to health; but propriety requires it be done in private.” Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 25, “De civilitate,” 277.

  115. 115. Otto Benesch, The Art of the Renaissance in Northern Europe (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1947), 97; Hans Sedlmayr “Bruegel’s ‘Macchia’” (1934), in The Vienna School Reader: Politics and Art Historical Method in the 1930’s, ed. Christopher S. Wood (New York, 2000), 341.

  116. 116. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 25, “De civilitate,” 275–76.

  117. 117. A child with a similar adult mask appears at the window of the central civic building in Children’s Games but does not appear to frighten any of the other children.

  118. 118. Snow, Inside Bruegel, 105–13.

  119. 119. Ibid., 277.

  120. 120. Ibid., 277.

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Meeus, Hubert. “Abraham Ortelius et Peeter Heyns.” In Abraham Ortelius: Cartographe et Humaniste, edited by R. J. Karrow, et al., 152–59, Turnhout: Brepols, 1998.

——. “Peeter Heyns, A ‘French Schoolmaster.’” In Grammaire et enseignement du français, 1500–1700, edited by J. de Clerq, P. Swiggers and N. Lioce, 301–16. Leuven: Peeters, 2000.

Meskens, Ad. “Liaisons dangereuses: Peeter Heyns en Abraham Ortelius.” De Gulden Passer Yearbook 76–77 (1998–99): 95–108.

Meurer, Peter. “Synonymia-Thesaurus-Nomenclator: Ortelius’s Dictionaries of Ancient Geographical Names.” In AbrahamOrtelius and the First Atlas: Essays Commemorating theQuadricentennial of His Death 1598–1998, edited by Marcel van den Broecke, 331–46. The Netherlands: HES, 1998.

Michaud, G. L. “Luis Vives and Rabelais’ Pedagogy.” PMLA 38 (1923): 419–14. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/457182

Murray, John J. Antwerp in the Age of Plantin and Brueghel. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1970.

The New Hollstein Dutch and Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts 1450–1700: Peeter van der Borcht. Compiled by Hans and Ursula Mielke, edited by Ger Luijten. Rotterdam: Sound and Vision, 2004.

Nijhoff, Wouter, and M. E. Kronenberg. Nederlandsche Bibliographie van 1500 tot 1540. 3 vols. S’Gravenhage: Nijhoff, 1923–61.

Opie, Iona, and Peter Opie. Children’s Games in Street and Playground. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1969.

——. Children’s Games with Things. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997.

Orenstein, Nadine M., ed. Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Drawings and Prints. Exh. cat. New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2001.

Orme, Nicholas. “The Culture of Children in Medieval Society.”Past and Present 148 (1995): 48–88. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/past/148.1.48

Orrock, Amy. “Play and Learning in Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games.” PhD diss., University of Edinburgh, 2010.

——. “Play Time: Picturing Seasonal Games in the Sixteenth Century.” In Spiritual Temporalities in Late-Medieval Europe, edited by Michael Foster, 165–96. Cambridge, 2010.

Panfosky, Erwin. Studies in Iconology: Humanistic Themes in the Art of the Renaissance. Rev. ed. New York: Harper & Row, 1972.

Pazkiewicz, Piotr P. “Nocturnal Bird of Wisdom: Symbolic Functions of the Owl in Emblems.” Bulletin du Musée National de Varsovie 23 (1982): 56–84.

Pirenne, Henri. “Rabelais dans le Pays-Bas.” Revue des Etudes Rabelaisiennes 4 (1906): 224–25.

Popham, A. E. “The Engravings and Woodcuts of Dirick Vellert.” Print Collector’s Quarterly 12 (1925): 343–68.

Post, R. R., Scholen en onderwijs in Nederland gedurende de Middeleeuwen. Utrecht: Het Spectrum, 1954.

Psichari, Michel. “Les Jeux de Gargantua (L. I, ch. XXII.).” Revue des Études Rabelaisiennes 6 (1908): 1–37, 124–81, 317–61; and 7 (1909): 48–64.

Puraye, Jean. ed.Album Amicorum:Abraham Ortelius. Amsterdam, 1969.

Rabelais, François. The Complete Works of François Rabelais. Translated by Donald M. Frame. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991.

Rawles, Stephen, and M. A. Screech. A New Rabelais Bibliography: Editions of Rabelais before 1626. Geneva: Droz, 1987.

Reinsberg-Düringsfeld, Otto von. Calendrier Belge: Fêtes religieuses et civiles, usages croyances et practiques populaires des Belges anciens et modernes. 2 vols. Brussels, 1891.

Riggs, Timothy. “Bruegel and His Publisher.” In Pieter Bruegel und Seine Welt, edited by Otto von Simpson and Hans Mielke, 165–73. Berlin: Mann, 1979.

——. Hieronymous Cock (1510–1570): Printmaker and Publisher in Antwerp at the Sign of the Four Winds. New York: Garland, 1977.

Rouzet, Ann. Dictionnaire des imprimeurs, libraries et éditeurs des XVe et XVIe siècles  dans les limites géographiques de la Belgique actuelle. Nieuwkoop: De Graf, 1975.

Sabbe, Maurits. Peeter Heyns en de Nimfen uit den Lauwerboom. Antwerp, 1934.

Salmi, Mario, and Gian Lorenzo Mellini. The Grimani Breviary: Reproduced from the Illuminated Manuscript Belonging to the Biblioteca Marciana. London: Thames & Hudson, 1972.

Saunders, Alison. “Franco-Dutch Publishing Relations: The Case of Christopher Plantin.” In The Stone of Alciato: Literature and Visual Culture in the Low Countries, edited by M. van Vaeck, H. Brems, and G. H. M. Claassens, 999–1017. Leuven: Peeters, 2003.

Schama, Simon. The Embarrassment of Riches: An Interpretation of Dutch Culture in the Golden Age. London: Collins, 1987.

Sedlmayr, Hans. “Bruegel’s ‘Macchia’” (1934). In The Vienna School Reader: Politics and Art Historical Method in the 1930’s, edited by Christopher S. Wood, 323–78. New York: Zone Books, 2000.

Seipel, Wilfried., ed. Pieter Bruegel the Elder at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. Vienna: Kunsthistoriches Museum, 1999.

Serebrennikov, Nina. “On the Surface of Dulle Griet: Pieter Bruegel in the Context of Rabelais.” In Rabelais in Context: Proceedings of the 1991 Vanderbilt Conference, edited by Barbara C. Bowen, 158–78. Birmingham, Ala.: Summa Publications, 1993.

Seybolt, Robert Francis. Renaissance Student Life: The Paedologia of Petrus Mosellanus. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1927.

Shaw, David. “The Lost First Editions of Gabriel Meurier’s Colloques ou nouvelle invention de propos familiers printed by Plantin, 1556–7.” Quaerendo 29 (1999): 41–51

Slive, Seymour. “Realism and Symbolism in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Painting,” Daedalus 91 (1962–63): 469–500.

Smolderen, Luc. “Tableaux de Jermone Bosch, de Pierre Bruegel l’Ancien et de Frans Floris disperses en vente publique a la Monnaie d’Anvers en 1572.” Revue Belge d’Archéologie et d’Histoire de l’art 6 (1995): 33–41.

Snow, Edward. Inside Bruegel: The Play of Images in Children’s Games. New York: North Point, 1997.

——. “‘Meaning’ in Children’s Games: On the Limitations of the Iconographic Approach to Bruegel.” Representations 2 (1983): 26–60. http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/rep.1983.2.1.99p0004c

Stechow, Wolfgang. “Homo Bulla.” Art Bulletin 20 (1938): 227—28. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3046578

Stella, Jacques. Games and Pastimes of Childhood. An unabridged reprint of the 1657 Les jeux et plaisirs de l’enfance with 52 illustrations by Jacques Stella. Preface, translations and notes by Stanley Appelbaum. New York: Dover, 1969.

Stridbeck, Carl Gustav. Bruegelstudien. Stockholm, 1956.

Sullivan, Margaret A. Bruegel and the Creative Process. Farnham, U.K.: Ashgate, 2010.

——. Bruegel’s Peasants: Art and Audience in the Northern Renaissance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

Tietze-Conrat, Erica. “Pieter Bruegels Kinderspiele.” Oudheidkundig Jaarboek 2 (1933): 127–30.

Vanden Branden, Jean-Pierre.“Les jeux d’enfants de Pierre Bruegel.”In Les Jeux à la Renaissance: Actes du XXIII e Colloque internationale d’etudes humanistes, edited by Philippe Ariès and Jean-Claude Margolin, 499–524. Paris, 1982.

Van Selm, Bert. “Some Early Editions of Gabriel Meurier’s School-Books.” Quaerendo 3 (1973): 217–25. http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/157006973X00228

Vives, Juan Luis. Vives on Education: A Translation of the ‘De Tradendis Disciplinis’ of Juan Luis Vives. Edited by Foster Watson. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1913.

Vives, Juan Luis. Tudor School-boy Life: The Dialogues of Juan Luis Vives. Edited by Foster Watson. London: Dent, 1908.

Voet, Leon. Antwerp, the Golden Age: The Rise and Glory of the Metropolis in the Sixteenth Century. Antwerp: Mercatorfonds, 1973.

Voet, Leon. The Golden Compasses: A History and Evaluation of the Printing and Publishing of the Officiana Plantiniana at Antwerp. Translated by Raymond H. Kay. 2 vols. Amsterdam: Vangendt, 1969.

Voet, Leon, and J. Voet-Grisolle. The Plantin Press (1555–1589): A Bibliography of the Works Printed and Published by Christopher Plantin at Antwerp and Leiden. 6 vols. Amsterdam: Van Hoeve, 1980–83.

Wagenberg-ter Hoeven, A. “The Celebration of Twelfth Night in Netherlandish Art.” Simiolus 22 (1994): 65–96. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3780806

Watson, Foster. “Maturinus Corderius: Schoolmaster at Paris, Bordeaux and Geneva, in the Sixteenth Century.” School Review 12 (1904): 281–98. http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/434580

Willemsen, Annemarieke. Back to the Schoolyard: The Daily Practice of Medieval and Renaissance Education. Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2008.

List of Illustrations

Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 1 Pieter Bruegel, Children’s Games, 1560, oil on panel, 118 x 161 cm. Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna, inv. no. GG 1017 (artwork in the public domain)
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Knucklebones detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 2 Knucklebones detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Hoop-rolling detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 3 Hoop-rolling detail, Children’s Games
Maerten van Heemskerck,  Twelve-Year-Old Boy, 1531,  Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
Fig. 4 Maerten van Heemskerck, Twelve-Year-Old Boy, 1531, oil on panel, 46.5 x 35 cm. Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, inv. no. 1797 (artwork in the public domain)
Hans and Ambrosius Holbein,  Signboard for a Schoolmaster (reverse), 1516,  Kunstmuseum, Basel
Fig. 5 Hans and Ambrosius Holbein, Signboard for a Schoolmaster (reverse), 1516, pine panel, 55.5 x 65.7 cm. Kunstmuseum, Basel, inv. no. 311 (artwork in the public domain)
Dirk Jacobz. Vellert,  Schoolroom, 1526,  British Museum, London
Fig. 6 Dirk Jacobz. Vellert, Schoolroom, 1526, woodcut, 13.3 x 22.5 cm. British Museum, London, inv. no. AN68174001 (artwork in the public domain)
Pieter Bruegel,  Temperantia (Temperance) (engraved by Philips G,  ca. 1560,  Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam
Fig. 7 Pieter Bruegel, Temperantia (Temperance), ca. 1560, engraving, 22.3 x 28.7 cm (engraved by Philips Galle, published by Hieronymous Cock). Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, inv. no. 15043 (artwork in the public domain)
Pieter Bruegel,  The Ass in School (engraved by Pieter van der He, 1557,  National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
Fig. 8 Pieter Bruegel, The Ass in School, 1557, engraving, 23.4 x 30.3 cm (engraved by Pieter van der Heyden, published by Hieronymous Cock). National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., inv. no. 1958.6.I (artwork in the public domain)
Pieter van der Borcht,  The Cobbler and His Wife as a Teacher (published, 1559,  British Museum, London
Fig. 9 Pieter van der Borcht, The Cobbler and His Wife as a Teacher, 1559, print, 31.5 x 43.5 cm (published by Bartholomaeus de Momper). British Museum, London, inv. no. AN61796001 (artwork in the public domain)
Maerten van Cleve,  Children’s Games,  1560s,  Musée Municipal, Saint Germain-en-Laye, Ducastel collection
Fig. 10 Maerten van Cleve, Children’s Games, 1560s, oil on panel. Musée Municipal, Saint Germain-en-Laye, Ducastel collection, inv. no. 872.1.80 (artwork in the public domain, photograph provided by Bridgeman Art Library)
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Duivekater bread and paper, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 11 Duivekater bread and paper crown detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Saint Nicolas baskets detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 12 Saint Nicolas baskets detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Whitsun bride detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 13 Whitsun bride detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Hobbyhorse detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 14 Hobbyhorse detail, Children’s Games
Pieter Bruegel,  Children’s Games, Beam detail, 1560,  Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna
Fig. 15 Beam detail, Children’s Games

Footnotes

  1. 1. Images of life like children playing games decorate the margins of at least eight sixteenth-century Ghent-Bruges manuscripts that predate Children’s Games, however, their small scale and rigid adherence to seasonal iconography mean that they differ significantly from Bruegel’s panel. For discussion of these images in relation to the panel, see Amy Orrock, “Play and Learning in Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games” (PhD diss., University of Edinburgh, 2010), 73–115; and Sandra Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games, Folly and Chance,” Art Bulletin 63 (1981): 447–75, Appendix II. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  2. 2. The first reference to Children’s Games appears in the account book of Archduke Ernst, governor general of the Habsburg Netherlands 1593–95. In an entry dated July 16, 1594, the archduke’s secretary recorded that the painting was supplied, along with several other works by Bruegel, by the art dealer Hane van Wijk. Algemeen Rijksarchief, Brussels, Manuscrits Divers No. 2924, fol. 148v. See A. Coremans, “L’Archduc Ernest, sa cour, ses dépenses, 1593–95,” Comptes rendus des séances de la Commission R. d’histoire 13 (Brussels, 1848): 85–147; and Iain Buchanan, “The Collection of Niclaes Jonghelinck: II. The ‘Months’ by Pieter Bruegel the Elder,” Burlington Magazine 132 (1990): 541–49, 550 n. 11. Children’s Gamesis now in a delicate state. It was cradled in the first half of the nineteenth century, and problems with the heating system in the newly constructed Kunsthistoriches Museum in Vienna caused blisters to appear on the surface of the painting. Conservation work to consolidate these blisters was carried out between 1892 and 1929, but since then there has been no major conservation work on the panel and the painting has not been subject to technical analysis using modern techniques such as infrared reflectography, pigment analysis, or dendrochronology. For these insights I am grateful to Dr. Karl Schütz, Head of Paintings, Kunsthistoriches Museum.

  3. 3. Numbered catalogues of the motifs in Children’s Games appear in Gustav Glück, Peter Bruegel the Elder (New York, 1937), Victor de Meyere, De Kinderspelen van Pieter Bruegel den Oude (Antwerp: Gevaert Photo-Productien, 1941), and Jeanette Hills, Das Kinderspelbild von Pieter Bruegel d. Ä, 1560 (Vienna, 1957). These catalogues were collated by Hindman in “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games” Appendix I. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145 Broader folkloristic studies of games which repeatedly reference Children’s Games include Alfons de Cock and Isidoor Teirlinck, Kinderspel en kinderlust in Zuid-Nederland, 8 vols. (Ghent: Koninklijke Vlaamsche Academie voor Taal-en Letterkunde, 1902–8), Johanna W. P. Drost, Het Nederlansch Kinderspel voor de 17e eeuw (The Hague, 1914), and Iona and Peter Opie, Children’s Games in Street and Playground (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1969).

  4. 4. For Christian von Mechel, the eighteenth-century curator of the Imperial Collections, Children’s Games represented “Spring” in a series of the four seasons, while for Charles de Tolnay it represented “Summer”; both interpretations have since been rejected. Chrétien de Mechel, Catalogue des tableaux de la Galerie Impériale et Royale de Vienne (Basel, 1784), nos. 61–64; Charles de Tolnay, Pierre Bruegel l’ancien, 2 vols. (Brussels: Nouvelle société d’éditions, 1935), 25–26.The suggestion by Erica Tietze-Conrat that the panel might represent the first painting, Infantia, in an incomplete series of the Ages of Man also seems unlikely. E. Tietze-Conrat, “Pieter Bruegels Kinderspiele,” Oudheidkundig Jaarboek 2 (1933): 127–30.  

  5. 5. Following a Panofskian model, those who move beyond the primary (preiconographical) and secondary (iconographical) modes of identifying and naming the games and attempt to synthesize how the representations might be understood within Bruegel’s own milieu can be described as the “iconologists.” Erwin Panfosky, Studies in Iconology: Humanistic Themes in the Art of the Renaissance, rev. ed. (New York: Harper & Row, 1972), 3–32.

  6. 6. For examples of how emblems have been used to decode Dutch paintings, see Tot Lering en Vermaak: Betekenissen van Hollandse Genrevoorstellingen uit de Zeventiende eeuw, ed. Eddy de Jongh, exh. cat. (Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 1976).

  7. 7. Wolfgang Stechow, “Homo Bulla,” Art Bulletin 20 (1938): 227–28 http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3046578; Carl Gustav Stridbeck, Bruegelstudien (Stockholm, 1956), 184–91; Seymour Slive, “Realism and Symbolism in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Painting,” Daedalus 91 (1962–63): 469–500; and Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games”, 462–69. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145A number of kinderspelen prints attributed to Adriaen van de Venne and Jan van de Velde II and found in seventeenth-century emblem books seem to have been directly inspired by Children’s Games.See John Landwehr, Emblem Books in the Low Countries 1554–1946: A Bibliography (Utrecht: Haentjens Dekker and Gumbert, 1970), nos. 80–125; and Simon Schama, The Embarrassment of Riches: An Interpretation of Dutch Culture in the Golden Age (London: Collins, 1987), 507–11.

  8. 8. Notable voices of dissent in the moralizing literature on Children’s Games have been Edward Snow, Inside Bruegel: The Play of Images in Children’s Games (New York: North Point, 1997) and Klaus Demus in Pieter Bruegel the Elder at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, ed. Wilfried Seipel (Vienna: Kunsthistoriches Museum, 1999).

  9. 9. Information on the patronage of the Proverbs and Carnival and Lent is similarly scant, but visually the three works have been described as a “set of collections,” together forming an “atlas of human culture.” Joseph Koerner, “Unmasking the World: Bruegel’s Ethnography,” Common Knowledge 10, no. 2 (2004): 240. http://dx.doi.org/10.1215/0961754X10-2-220

  10. 10. Walter S. Gibson, Bruegel (London: Thames & Hudson, 1977), 65–89; David Kunzle, “Bruegel’s Proverb Painting and the World Upside Down,” Art Bulletin 59 (1977): 197–202. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307
    /3049631
    On the Theatrum Mundi in the sixteenth century, see Lynda G. Christian, Theatrum Mundi: The History of an Idea (New York: Garland, 1987) and Ann Blair, The Theatre of Nature: Jean Bodin and Renaissance Science (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1997), chapter 5.

  11. 11. Mark Meadow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’sNetherlandish Proverbs and the Practice of Rhetoric (Zwolle: Waanders, 2002); Ethan M. Kavaler, Pieter Bruegel: Parables of Order and Enterprise (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 111–48.

  12. 12. The only known exceptions to this group of “merchant patrons” are the learned geographer Abraham Ortelius, who owned a small grisaille by the artist, and Cardinal Granvelle, who owned a number of works by Bruegel.

  13. 13. On the collections of Noirot and Cheeus, see Luc Smolderen, “Tableaux de Jermone Bosch, de Pierre Bruegel l’Ancien et de Frans Floris disperses en vente publique a la Monnaie d’Anvers en 1572,” Revue Belge d’Archéologie et d’Histoire de l’art 6 (1995): 33–41; Claudia Goldstein, “Artifacts of Domestic Life: Bruegel’s Paintings in the Flemish Home,” Nederlands Kunsthistorisch Jaarboek 51 (2000): 174–93; and Walter S. Gibson, Pieter Bruegel and the Art of Laughter (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006), 67–76.

  14. 14. Staadsarchief, Antwerp, Tresorij 1711, no. 1551, February 21, 1565. See Jean Denucé, De Antwerpsche Konstkamers: Inventarissen van kunstverzamelingen te Antwerpen in de 16e en 17e eeuwen (Antwerp: De Sikkel, 1932), 5.

  15. 15. Buchanan, “The Collection of Niclaes Jonghelinck.”

  16. 16. Goldstein, “Artifacts of Domestic Life”; Gibson, Pieter Bruegel and the Art of Laughter, 106–16; Mark Meadow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’sNetherlandish Proverbs, 153–57.

  17. 17. Karel van Mander, The Lives of the Illustrious Netherlandish and German Painters, from the First Edition of the ‘Schilder-boeck’ (1603–4), trans. and ed. Hessel Miedema (Doornspijk: Davaco, 1994), 1:134–37.

  18. 18. Edward Snow, “‘Meaning’ in Children’s Games: On the Limitations of the Iconographic Approach to Bruegel,” Representations 2 (1983), 43. http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/rep.1983.2.1.99p0004c

  19. 19. Margaret A. Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process (Farnham, U.K.: Ashgate, 2010), 70–100. Unfortunately Sullivan’s work appeared too late to be considered in my doctoral research.

  20. 20. Ibid., 75.

  21. 21. Sullivan concludes: “while many of the activities in Children’s Games are free of any pejorative associations a relatively large number follow the satirists in taking a pessimistic view of human behaviour.” Ibid., 87.

  22. 22. François Rabelais, The Complete Works of François Rabelais, trans. Donald M. Frame (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991), 50–54.

  23. 23. Published after Rabelais’s death, the book made extensive use of figures taken from Bruegel’s designs for the print series the Seven Deadly Sins.Michel Jeanneret, Les Songes Drolatiques du Pantagruel (Geneva: Librairie Droz, 2004); Walter S. Gibson, “Bosch’s Dreams: A Response to the Art of Bosch in the Sixteenth Century,” Art Bulletin 74 (1992): 205–18 http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3045869; Gibson, Bruegel and the Art of Laughter, 28–38.

  24. 24. Nina Serebrennikov used Rabelais to draw attention to the multivalent quality of Bruegel’s paintings, arguing that both men adopted the same rhetorical strategy of allowing the details on the surface of their works to proliferate; effectively complicating meaning by inviting different interpretations. Nina E. Serebrennikov, “On the Surface of Dulle Griet: Pieter Bruegel in the Context of Rabelais,” in Rabelais in Context: Proceedings of the 1991 Vanderbilt Conference, ed. Barbara C. Bowen (Birmingham, Ala.: Summa Publications, 1993), 158–78. Mark Meadow similarly cited the work of Montaigne, Shakespeare, and Rabelais when discussing the “habits of mind” engendered by Northern copia. Meadow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s Netherlandish Proverbs, 25.

  25. 25. A parallel with Netherlandish Proverbs exists in chapter 21 of Rabelais’s Cinq Livre (1564), which has the officers of the Queen Quinte-Essence wildly acting out proverbs; Bruegel’s Battle Between Carnival and Lent is also reminiscent of the antagonism between Quaresmeprenant, a monster with Lenten characteristics, and the Andouilles (tripe sausages) in Rabelais’s QuartLivre (1552). See Wilhelm Fraenger, “Das Bild der Niederländischen Sprichwörter Pieter Bruegels Verkerte Welt,” Castrum Peregrini 336 (1999): 5–83; and Samuel Kinser, Rabelais’s Carnival: Text, Context, Metatext (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1990), 47–51. 

  26. 26. Snow, Inside Bruegel, 33. Although never explored in detail, these parallels have not gone unnoticed by scholars. See Demus in Pieter Bruegel the Elder at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna; Jean-Pierre Vanden Branden, “Les jeux d’enfants de Pierre Bruegel, in Les Jeux à la Renaissance: Actes du XXIII e Colloque internationale d’etudes humanistes,” ed. Philippe Ariès et Jean-Claude Margolin (Paris, 1982), 499–524; and Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,” 459 n. 82. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  27. 27. I borrow this phrase from Mark Meadow, who uses it to describe both the creation and reception of collections such as Bruegel’s Netherlandish Proverbs. Meadow views the habits of mind of the period as rooted in Northern humanist educational techniques, specifically the “notebook system,” which defined rhetorical practice. Meadow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s Netherlandish Proverbs, 83–97. I argue similarly that humanist educational practices would have underpinned the inception and reception of sixteenth-century game collections such as that found in Rabelais’s Gargantua and Bruegel’s Children’s Games.  

  28. 28. Henri Pirenne, “Rabelais dans le Pays-Bas,” Revue des Etudes Rabelaisiennes 4 (1906): 224–25; Marcel de Greve, “Rabelais au pays de Brueghel: Réflexions sur la Popularité de Rabelais dans le Pays-Bas du XVIe siècle,” Bibliothèque d’Humanisme et Renaissance 17 (1955): 171–72.

  29. 29. Leon Voet, The Golden Compasses: A History and Evaluation of the Printing and Publishing of the Officiana Plantiniana at Antwerp, trans. Raymond H. Kay, 2 vols. (Amsterdam: Vangendt, 1969).

  30. 30. See Leon Voet and J. Voet-Grisolle, The Plantin Press (1555–1589): A Bibliography of the Works Printed and Published by Christopher Plantin at Antwerp and Leiden, 6 vols. (Amsterdam: Van Hoeve, 1980–83), 1:2521–56; and Alison Saunders, “Franco-Dutch Publishing Relations: The Case of Christopher Plantin,” in The Stone of Alciato: Literature and Visual Culture in the Low Countries, ed. M. van Vaeck, H. Brems, and G. H. M. Claassens (Leuven: Peeters, 2003), 999–1017.

  31. 31. Dutch: 319; French: 308; Spanish: 39; German: 15; English: 5. Voet, The Plantin Press: A Bibliography, 1:2521–56.

  32. 32. Wouter Nijhoff and M. E. Kronenberg, Nederlandsche Bibliographie van 1500 tot 1540, 3 vols. (S’ Gravenhage: Nijhoff, 1923–61); Voet, The Plantin Press: A Bibliography.

  33. 33. Plantin Archive, Franç., no. 35. Journal 1558–61.

  34. 34. Folios 1r, 29r, 42v, 43r, 55r, 56r (Rabelais); folios 34r, 68r, 73r, 77v (Pantagruel); folio 82r (Rabelais pantagruel).

  35. 35. The veuve Pissart was active in Ath in the 1560s and can be identified with the widow of the Ath printer Joannes Masius. See Anne Rouzet, Dictionnaire des imprimeurs, libraries et éditeurs des XVe et XVIe siècles  dans les limites géographiques de la Belgique actuelle (Nieuwkoop: De Graf, 1975), 177.

  36. 36. Plantin Archive, Franç., no. 44. Journal 1566. Folios 2r, 7v, and 90v.

  37. 37. See Stephen Rawles and M. A. Screech, A New Rabelais Bibliography: Editions of Rabelais before 1626 (Geneva: Droz, 1987), nos. 3, 58, 135, and 136. 

  38. 38. Plantin’s earliest association with Cock can be traced to prints sent to the Parisian bookseller Martin Le Jeune in 1556, and in 1559 the two men collaborated on The Funeral Procession of Charles V. Cock was one of the twenty-eight guests invited to the wedding of Plantin’s daughter in 1565. Timothy Riggs,Hieronymous Cock (1510–1570): Printmaker and Publisher in Antwerp at the Sign of the Four Winds (New York: Garland, 1977), 64.

  39. 39. Compiled between 1573 and 1596 Ortelius’s Album Amicorum contains 134 entries and provides a valuable insight into the intellectual life of Antwerp in the sixteenth century. Plantin and Bruegel appear alongside prominent intellectuals, artists, and statesman, including John Dee, Gerard Mercator, Justus Lipsius, and Emmanuel van Meteren. See Album Amicorum:Abraham Ortelius, ed. Jean Puraye (Amsterdam, 1969), folios 12v and 73r. For more on the social connections between Bruegel, Plantin, and Ortelius, see Margaret Sullivan, Bruegel’s Peasants: Art and Audience in the Northern Renaissance (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994), 5–13.

  40. 40. In the process of assembling maps for his great atlas Ortelius amassed a long list of ancient geographical names which he continued to edited and published throughout the latter half of the sixteenth century, first with ten thousand entries as the Synonymia Geographia (1579) and then with thirty thousand entries as the Thesaurus Geographicus (1587). See Peter Meurer, “Synonymia-Thesaurus-Nomenclator: Ortelius’s Dictionaries of Ancient Geographical Names,” in AbrahamOrtelius and the First Atlas: Essays Commemorating the Quadricentennial of His Death 1598–1998, ed. Marcel van den Broecke (The Netherlands: HES, 1998), 331–46.

  41. 41. G. L. Michaud, “Luis Vives and Rabelais’ Pedagogy,” PMLA 38 (1923): 419–14 http://dx.doi.org
    /10.2307/457182
    ; Rita Guerlac, “Vives and the Education of Gargantua,” Etudes Rabelaisiennes 11 (1974): 63–72; Richard Berrong, Rabelais and Bakhtin: Popular Culture in Gargantua and Pantagruel (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1986), 22–23.

  42. 42. This statement appears in De utilitate Colloquiorum (The Usefulness of the Colloquies). First printed in 1526, the text was included at or near the end of subsequent editions of the colloquies and formed both a defense and an apology for the content of the colloquies (most especially those which commented upon religion). Desiderius Erasmus, Collected Works of Erasmus, ed. Craig R. Thompson (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1978), vol. 40, “De utilitate Colloquiorum,” 1098.

  43. 43. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 24, “De ratione studii.”

  44. 44. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 25, “De civilitate.”

  45. 45. See Franz Bierlaire, “Erasmus at School: The De Civilitate Morum Puerilium Libellus,” in Essays on the Works of Erasmus, ed. Richard L. de Molen (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1978), 239–46.

  46. 46. Heemskerck was based in Haarlem, but, like Bruegel, he had a strong relationship with Hieronymous Cock, supplying the Antwerp publisher with 176 designs for prints during the period 1550–70. Timothy A. Riggs, “Bruegel and His Publisher,” in Pieter Bruegel und Seine Welt, ed. Otto von Simpson and Hans Mielke (Berlin: Mann, 1979), 165.

  47. 47. The text was dedicated to Jan de Neve, rector of Louvain university. Jan Baptist Bedaux and Rudi Ekkart, eds. Pride and Joy: Children’s Portraits in the Netherlands, 1500–1700, exh. cat. (Ghent: Ludion, 2001), no. 4.

  48. 48. Juan Luis Vives, Vives on Education: A Translation of the ‘De Tradendis Disciplinis’ of Juan Luis Vives, ed. Foster Watson (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1913). Vives’s other educational works included the Adversus pseudodialectricos (1519); De institutione feminae Christianae (1523), De ratione studii puerilis (1523) and the Introductio ad sapientiam (1524).

  49. 49. Vives, Vives on Education, 121; Guerlac, “Vives and the Education of Gargantua,” 68.

  50. 50. These collections were each published in over a hundred editions. See Erasmus, Collected Works, vols. 39 and 40; Juan Luis Vives, Tudor School-boy Life: The Dialogues of Juan Luis Vives, ed. Foster Watson (London: Dent, 1908); Maturin Corderius, Corderius dialogues translated grammatically, trans. John Brindsley (London, 1636); Foster Watson “Maturinus Corderius: Schoolmaster at Paris, Bordeaux and Geneva, in the Sixteenth Century,” School Review 12 (1904): 281–98 http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/434580; and Elizabeth K. Hudson, “The Colloquies of Maturin Cordier: Images of Calvinist School Life and Thought,” Sixteenth Century Journal 9 (1978): 56–78. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/2539446

  51. 51. Examples of less well-known colloquies include: Andreas Huendern, Latinum idioma (1501); Laurentius Corvinus, Latinum idioma (1503); Collocutiones duorim puerorum de rebus puerilibus as invicem loquentium (ca. 1503); Petrus Mosellanus, Paedologia (1518); Christophorus Hegendorffinus, Dialogi pueriles (1520); Hadrianus Barlandus, Dialogi ad profligandam e scholis barbariem utilissimi (1524); Hermannus Schottenius, Confabulationes tironum litterariorum (1525); Sebaldus Heyden, Formulae puerilium colloquiorum (1528); Jonas Philologus, Dialogi (1529); Jacobus Zovitius, Colloquia (date unknown); Sebastien Castellion, Dialogi sacri (1543); Nicolaus Winmannus, Dialogi (1544), and Martinus Duncanus, Praetextata latine loquendi ratio (1552). See Robert Francis Seybolt, Renaissance Student Life: The Paedologia of Petrus Mosellanus (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1927).  

  52. 52. Watson, “Maturinus Corderius: Schoolmaster at Paris, Bordeaux, and Geneva.” http://dx.doi.org
    /10.1086/434580

  53. 53. Thomas Elyot, The Book Named the Governor, ed. Stanford E. Lehmberg (London: Dent, 1962), 60–64.

  54. 54. Ascham lists riding, tilting, weaponry, vaulting, running, leaping, wrestling, swimming, dancing, singing, playing instruments, hawking, hunting, and tennis. Roger Ascham, The Schoolmaster, ed. Lawrence V. Ryan (New York: Cornell University Press, 1963), 62–63.

  55. 55. Richard L. de Molen, Richard Mulcaster and Educational Reform in the Renaissance (Nieuwkoop: De Graaf, 1991).

  56. 56. Antwerp saw the first publication of Vives’s De tradendis disciplinis in 1531 and Erasmus’s works were also widely available in the Netherlands in the decades prior to the creation of Children’s Games, with editions of the Colloquies printed in Antwerp in the 1520’s and 1530’s and the De Civilitate translated into nederlandsch in 1559. Erasmus’s Colloquies were repeatedly banned by the faculty of theology of the University of Paris during the 1550’s and were finally placed on the papal Index of Prohibited Books in 1564, but the genre continued to thrive, with Antwerp witnessing the publication of an expanded edition of Vives’s Linguae latina exercitatio in 1552 and Cordier’s Colloquiorum scholasticorum in 1577 (Plantin Press).

  57. 57. Nadine Orenstein, Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Drawings and Prints, exh. cat. (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2001), nos. 40, 41, 76, and 77.

  58. 58. On the humanist educators and physical punishment, see Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process, 76 n. 90.

  59. 59. It states: “Al reyst den esele ter scholen om leeren – Ist eenen esele. Hy en sal gheen peert weder keeren” (Although the ass goes to school in order to learn, if it is an ass, it will not return a horse). The message is repeated in both Flemish and Latin in the lower margin of the engraving. The Latin inscription represents a slight variation by mentioning Paris, a center of learning that would have been familiar to European humanists: parisios stolidvm si qvis transmittat asellvm. si hic est asinvs non erit illic eqvvs(If you send a stupid ass to Paris, if it is an ass here, it will not be a horse there). Orenstein, Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Drawings and Prints, 142–44.

  60. 60. Picturing a chaotic agglomeration of children, each intent on their own activity and set beside or within the rustic vernacular space of a barn, the atmosphere in many of the seventeenth-century “unruly schoolrooms” is similar to that of Children’s Games; however, the seventeenth-century unruly schoolrooms were all produced too late to be directly comparable to Bruegel’s panel. See examples in Mary Frances Durantini, The Child in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Painting (Epping, U.K.: Bowker, 1983), chapter 2.

  61. 61. New Hollstein, Peeter van der Borcht, compiled by Hans and Ursula Mielke, edited by Ger Luijten (Rotterdam: Sound and Vision, 2004), no. 178; Walter S. Gibson, “Some Flemish Popular Prints from Hieronymous Cock and His Contemporaries,” Art Bulletin 60 (1978): 673–81. http://dx.doi.org
    /10.2307/3049845

  62. 62. Translation taken from Gibson, “Some Flemish Popular Prints,” 677.  http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3049845

  63. 63. Jean Denucé, De Antwerpsche Konstkamers, doc. 10, 14–27; Erik Durverger, Antwerpse kunstinventarissen uit de zeventiende eeuw (Brussels, 1984), 1:299–311.

  64. 64. The version discussed here is in the Ducastel Collection, Saint Germaine-en-Laye. Other versions exist in the Kunstmuseum Stuttgart (previously in the collection Heinz Kisters at Kreulingen, Switzerland); the Collection Vittorio Duca, Milan, and the Isaac Delgado Museum of Art, New Orleans.G. T. Faggin “De genre-schilder Marten van Cleef,”Oud-Holland 29 (1965): 34–46; Georges Marlier, Pierre Bruegel le Jeune (Brussels: Fink, 1969), 350–51.

  65. 65. For an illuminating introduction to the history and material culture of education in the Netherlands in this period, see Annemarieke Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard: The Daily Practice of Medieval and Renaissance Education (Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2008). See also P. Th. F. M. Boekholt and E. P. de Booy, Geschiedenis van de school in Nederland vanaf de middeleeuwen tot aan de huidige tijd (Assen: Van Gorcum, 1987) and R. R. Post, Scholen en onderwijs in Nederland gedurende de Middeleeuwen (Utrecht: Het Spectrum, 1954)

  66. 66. Guicciardini, cited in Guido Marnef, Antwerp in the Age of Reformation: Underground Protestantism in a Commercial Metropolis, 1550-1577, trans. J. C. Grayson (Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press, 1996), 33.

  67. 67. The chapter of Our Lady’s church was responsible for running the papenschool or ‘priests school’ located behind the cathedral on Milk Street. In 1521 three new church schools were set up, attached to the parishes of St. Walburg’s, St. Joris and St. Jacob respectively. In 1529 a fifth school was added, connected to the new parish church of St. Andries.

  68. 68. Founded in 1530 at the request of Antwerp’s free schoolmasters, the organization and membership of the Guild of St. Ambrose is detailed in a two-volume Rekenboeck (account book) kept by the guild between 1530 and 1634 and preserved in the city archives at Antwerp. See Caroline Bourland, The Guild of Saint Ambrose, or Schoolmasters’ Guild of Antwerp, 1529–1579 (Northampton, Mass.: Dept of History of Smith College, 1951). For Antwerp’s free schools in the wider context of educational developments in the Netherlands, see Marnef, Antwerp in the Age of Reformation;John J. Murray, Antwerp in the Age of Plantin and Brueghel (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1970), 98; Leon Voet, Antwerp, the Golden Age: The Rise and Glory of the Metropolis in the Sixteenth Century (Antwerp: Mercatorfonds, 1973), 400; and Karel Davids, “The Book-keeper’s Tale. Learning Merchant Skills in the Northern Netherlands in the Sixteenth Century,” in Education and Learning in the Netherlands, 1400–1600, ed. K. Goudriaan, J. van Moolenbroek, and A. Tervoort (Leiden: Brill, 2004), 235–51.

  69. 69. The woodcut has been described as a documentary representation of a Protestant school according to the recommendations of the leaders of the Reformation, however, in 1526 Vellert was serving his second turn as dean of the Antwerp Guild of St. Luke, and it therefore seems more likely that the woodcut pictures one of Antwerp’s free schools. E. S. Jacobwitz and S. L. Stepanek, Lucas van Leyden and his Contemporaries, exh. cat. (National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1983), no. 140; A. E. Popham, “The Engravings and Woodcuts of Dirick Vellert,” Print Collector’s Quarterly 12 (1925): 343–68.

  70. 70. A city ordinance issued in Antwerp in 1439 read: “The teachers in the Flemish (Dietsche) schools shall teach boys no more Latin than their prayers, creed and seven psalms. When they are ready to study Donatus, they must go to the priests’ school.” Bourland, The Guild of Saint Ambrose, 2. By 1546 a second ordinance appears to update this, stating that after students had learned the alphabet, Pater noster, and other pious works they could proceed, learning from a list of thirty-five works in Latin and fifteen in Greek. Roger H. Marijnissen, Bruegel: Tout l’oeuvre peint et dessiné (Antwerp: Fonds Mercator, 1988), 80; and by 1576 Latin and Greek were included among the list of subjects taught in the schools of the Guild of St. Ambrose. Bourland, The Guild of St. Ambrose, 7.

  71. 71. Marnef, Antwerp in the Age of Reformation,33–37.

  72. 72. Puraye, Album Amicorum, folios 4v, 7r, 104v, 105r, and 117v. Ad Meskens, “Liaisons dangereuses: Peeter Heyns en Abraham Ortelius,” De Gulden Passer Yearbook 76–77 (1998–99): 95–108; Hubert Meeus, “Abraham Ortelius et Peeter Heyns,” in Abraham Ortelius: Cartographe et Humaniste, ed. R. J. Karrow, et al. (Turnhout: Brepols, 1998), 152–59.

  73. 73. For Heyns’s own works, see Hubert Meeus,  “Peeter Heyns, A ‘French Schoolmaster,’” in Grammaire et enseignement du français, 1500–1700, ed. J. de Clerq, P. Swiggers, and N. Lioce (Leuven: Peeters, 2000), 301–-316.

  74. 74. Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process, 76.

  75. 75. The register and finances of the school are preserved in two books in the Plantin-Moretus Museum: Manuscript M 394 and M 240, and are reproduced in Maurits Sabbe, Peeter Heyns en de Nimfen uit den Lauwerboom (Antwerp, 1934), 20–21.

  76. 76. Murray, Antwerp in the Age of Plantin and Brueghel, 101.

  77. 77. For a bibliography of works published by Antwerp’s schoolmasters, see H. L. V. de Groote, “De zestiende-eeuwse Antwerpse schoolmeesters,” Bijdragen tot de Geschiedenis bijzonderlijk van het oude hertogdom Brabant 50 (1967): 179–318, and 51 (1968): 5–52.On Heyns’s ABC, see Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process, 77.

  78. 78. Admitted to the Guild of St. Ambrose in 1548, Meurier served as its dean three times. For a bibliography of his works, many of which were printed by Plantin, see Willem de Vreese, “Gabriel Meurier,” in Bibliographie nationale publié par l’Académie royale des sciences, des lettres et des beaux-arts de Belgique (Brussels, 1897), 14:700–763. See also David Shaw, “The Lost First Editions of Gabriel Meurier’s Colloques ou nouvelle invention de propos familiers printed by Plantin, 1556–7,” Quaerendo 29 (1999): 41–51; and Bert van Selm, “Some Early Editions of Gabriel Meurier’s School-Books,” Quaerendo 3 (1973): 217–25. http://dx.doi.org/10.1163
    /157006973X00228

  79. 79. In addition to the poems, Meurier’s text appears frequently in Heyn’s account book. Sabbe, Peeter Heyns, 49. On this text, see Evelyne Beriot-Salvadore, “L’Emploi du temps d’une écolière à Anvers, en 1580, d’après La Guirlande des Jeunes filles, par Gabriel Meurier,” Bibliographie d’humanisme et Renaissance 44 (1982): 533–44.

  80. 80. Erasmus’s colloquy De lusu (Sport) opens with a boy declaring that: “Inclination, the weather, and the season have long been inviting us to play,” and the boys quickly hatch a plan to convince the master to let them. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 39, 83.

  81. 81. Elyot, The Governor, chapter 17, “Exercises whereby should grow both recreation and profit,” 62.

  82. 82. Mulcaster, Positions, chapter 31, “Of the exercising places,” 119–20.

  83. 83. A filigree spire and onion dome resembling Antwerp’s Cathedral of Our Lady can be made out at the end of the receding street on the right and a black spire similar to that of Saint Michael’s Abbey rises from the roofs on the left. Snow, Inside Bruegel, 84.The gray stretch of river just discernible from the paler gray of the sky at the upper left of the painting might be understood as a third reference to Antwerp, recalling the broad surface of the Scheldt.

  84. 84. One of the protagonists in Vives’s dialogue Leges ludi (Laws of Play) describes how: “We have a teacher Anneus who used to allow card-playing at festival times.” Vives, Tudor School-boy Life, Dialogue 22, 204. In sixteenth-century Latin schools it is estimated that at least one hundred days per year were holidays, including the months of July and August and Holy Days and feasts specific to the school, city or country. Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard, 26.

  85. 85. Details around the bonfire, including the children collecting firewood and carrying aloft forked sticks with paper attached, all correspond to recorded celebrations for Saint John’s Day and the midsummer solstice on June 23 and 24, and the related Feasts of Saints Peter and Paul on June 29. The children playing in the river may be a further reference to Saint John the Baptist, or Sint jan de wasscher as he was called in Flanders.Charles de Tolnay, Pierre Bruegel l’ancien, 25–26; Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,”420–53 http://dx.doi.org
    /10.2307/3050145
    ; Otto von Reinsberg-Düringsfeld, Calendrier Belge: Fêtes religieuses et civiles, usages croyances et practiques populaires des Belges anciens et modernes (Brussels, 1891), 1:417.

  86. 86. “by juxtaposing the representations of marriage and baptism to that of blindman’s buff and by including the blue cloak, Bruegel suggests that folly accompanies life’s major events.” Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,” 452. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  87. 87. See Amy Orrock, “Play Time: Picturing Seasonal Games in the Sixteenth Century.” In Spiritual Temporalities in Late-Medieval Europe, edited by Michael Foster (Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010), 165–96.

  88. 88. Duivekater loaves and paper crowns appear in other representations of winter festivities, including Sebastian Vranckx’s Winter (Belgium, private collection) and Jan Steen’s Feast of Saint Nicholas (Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum). Vranckx’s Winteris reproduced in A. A. Wagenberg-ter Hoeven, “The Celebration of Twelfth Night in Netherlandish Art,” Simiolus 22 (1994): 65–96, fig. 23. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3780806 For Steen’s painting, see Perry H. Chapman, et. al., Jan Steen: Painter and Storyteller (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1996), no. 30

  89. 89. Vives, Tudor School-boy Life, Dialogue 22, 206. 

  90. 90. See the model student Gaspar’s caveat in Erasmus’s colloquy: “After grace is said, I relax, if I have nothing else to do, by playing some wholesome game with companions until it’s time to return from play to school.” Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 39, “Confabulatio pia (The Whole Duty of Youth),” 88–99. Cordier’s colloquies repeatedly stage encounters between masters and pupils where children seek permission to play and are made to recite lessons or complete tasks before it is granted. Corderius dialogues, nos. 8, 54, 55, 57, and 58.

  91. 91. On the symbolism of owls in the sixteenth century, see Piotr P. Pazkiewicz, “Nocturnal Bird of Wisdom: Symbolic Functions of the Owl in Emblems,” Bulletin du Musée national de Varsovie 23 (1982): 56–84. Bruegel’s printed oeuvre offers a typically diverse range of owl symbolism, which frequently seems to be related to antecedents in images by Hieronymus Bosch: owls appear above lustful couples in Bruegel’s Desidia (Sloth) and Patientia (Patience); accompany fools in the Feast of Fools and TheStone Operation; in Gula (Gluttony) an owl is perched atop a windmill, and in the Last Judgment a hybrid owl with a nest of smaller owls on its back is one of several otherworldly creatures who walk the earth. Owls often feature in seventeenth-century unruly schoolrooms, including Pieter de Bloot’s Raucous School (Mainz, Mittelrheinisches Landesmuseum), Adriaen Van Ostade’s School (Paris, Louvre), and Jan Steen’s School for Boys and Girls (Edinburgh, National Gallery of Scotland).

  92. 92. For a discussion of school baskets see Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard, 80-82.

  93. 93. Ibid., 82.

  94. 94. Images which combine writing cases with other symbols of education, such as paddles, rods, school baskets and schoolbags, include the Emblem of a Teacher, c.1500, Rotterdam, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, BdH 14127 and ‘St. Felix killed with school equipment’, Legenda Aurea, Flemish, c.1445-1460. New York, The Morgan Library, M. 672, f. 87r. Writing cases hang from the belts of almost all of the apes in Pieter van der Borcht’s Monkey School (c. 1580). For these images and other examples of sixteenth-century writing cases (both excavated and represented in prints and paintings) see Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard, 77-79.

  95. 95. For this image and more on the Schwartz costume books see Willemsen, Back to the Schoolyard, 167-179.

  96. 96. Vives, On Education, 121.

  97. 97. Hudson, “The Colloquies of Maturin Cordier,” 69. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307
    /2539446

  98. 98. Meurier, La Guirlande des jeune filles, 40.

  99. 99. Rabelais, Complete Works, 56. Vives, On Education, 121. There is some evidence that Vives’s ideas were incorporated into schools; the document marking the re-foundation of Canterbury Cathedral and grammar school states: “whatever they are doing in earnest or in play they shall never use any language but Latin or Greek.” Arthur F. Leach, Educational Charters and Documents 598 to 1909 (Cambridge, 1911), 469.

  100. 100. Nicholas Orme, “The Culture of Children in Medieval Society,” Past and Present 148 (1995): 87. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093
    /past/148.1.48

  101. 101. Rabelais, Complete Works, 55–60. In the Governor Elyot similarly describes how Achilles trained his warriors in running and how Julius Caesar’s ability to swim saved his life at the battle of Alexandria. Elyot, Governor, 60–64.

  102. 102. Rabelais, Complete Works, 60.

  103. 103. On this activity, see Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,” 469. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  104. 104. “P” (French piller, “plunder,” Italian pigliar, “to take”) or “A” (Latin accipe, “receive”)–the player takes only the initial amount he or she put into the pot. “N” (Spanish nada, “nothing”) or “R” (French rien)–the player gets nothing from the pot. “J” (Middle French jocque, “game”) or “G” (Italian giuoco)–the player puts additional funds into the pot that are equal to his or her initial amount. “F” (French fors, “out,” Italian fuora, “all is over”)–the player wins the entire pot and ends the game.

  105. 105. The prominence of this game in Bruegel’s painting and its absence in manuscript marginalia were for Hindman evidence that Children’s Games was a presentation of foolish behavior and, more specifically, a negative comment on the role of chance in love and marriage. Hindman, “Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games,” 455 .http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3050145

  106. 106. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 40, “Kuncklebones or The Game of Tali,” 891–904. One of Erasmus’s sources is recognized to be the humanist scholar Niccolò Leonico Thomaeus’s description of De ludo talari (the game of talari) in his Dialogi (Venice, 1524). 

  107. 107. Pollux’s Onomasticon describes a version of the game where the bones were thrown upward, then the back of the hand outstretched in the hope that they would land on it. Iona and Peter Opie, Children’s Games with Things (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997), 56–72.

  108. 108. Vives, Tudor School-boy Life, Dialogue 22 208. For Vives games with knucklebones were not as bad as those with dice, which were played with by “the worse sort of boys.” Ibid., 204.

  109. 109. Augmented with invented words, proverbial terms, and play chants, Gargantua’s game list is notoriously difficult to decipher; however, scholars believe that the games A la barbe d’oribus, A la boutte foyre, and A rouchemerde involved excrement. Michel Psichari, “Les Jeux de Gargantua (L. I, ch. XXII.),” Revue des Études Rabelaisiennes 6 (1908): 168–69; and 7 (1909): 327. Depictions of other scatological games can be found in a sixteenth-century French manuscript known as the Livre d’heures de la famille Ango (Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, MS. NAL 392).  

  110. 110. Oxford, Bodleian Library, Douce Ms 276, fols. 118r and 35r; Jacques Stella, Games and Pastimes of Childhood, trans. Stanley Appelbaum (New York: Dover, 1969), no. 34.

  111. 111. For this print see Orenstein, Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Drawings and Prints, no. 79.

  112. 112. Sullivan, Bruegel and the Creative Process, 81.

  113. 113. Michiel viewed the breviary in Cardinal Grimani’s Venetian palace in 1521 and is the earliest known source to mention the work. He described how the most praised of the leaves “are the twelve months, among them February, where a boy urinating in the snow turns it yellow and the surrounding countryside is frozen and covered in snow.” (Lodansi in esso sopratutto li 12 mesi, et tralli altri il febbraro, ove uno fanciullo orinando nella neve, le fa gialla et il paese ivi è tutto nevoso et giacciato). Mario Salmi and Gian Lorenzo Mellini, The Grimani Breviary: Reproduced from the Illuminated Manuscript Belonging to the Biblioteca Marciana (London: Thames & Hudson, 1972), 253. Several decades later the scene was reproduced in reverse in a prayerbook made for a member of the Portuguese royal family (Lisbon, Museu Nacional de Arte Antigua, Ms. 13, fol. 2v); and the Hennessy Hours (Brussels, Bibliothèque royale de Belgique, Ms. II 159; fol. 2v).

  114. 114. “To repress the need to urinate is injurious to health; but propriety requires it be done in private.” Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 25, “De civilitate,” 277.

  115. 115. Otto Benesch, The Art of the Renaissance in Northern Europe (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1947), 97; Hans Sedlmayr “Bruegel’s ‘Macchia’” (1934), in The Vienna School Reader: Politics and Art Historical Method in the 1930’s, ed. Christopher S. Wood (New York, 2000), 341.

  116. 116. Erasmus, Collected Works, vol. 25, “De civilitate,” 275–76.

  117. 117. A child with a similar adult mask appears at the window of the central civic building in Children’s Games but does not appear to frighten any of the other children.

  118. 118. Snow, Inside Bruegel, 105–13.

  119. 119. Ibid., 277.

  120. 120. Ibid., 277.

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Ascham, Roger. The Schoolmaster. Edited by Lawrence V. Ryan. New York: Cornell University Press, 1963.

Bedaux, Jan Baptist, and Rudi Ekkart, eds. Pride and Joy: Children’s Portraits in the Netherlands, 1500–700. Exh. cat. Ghent: Ludion, 2001.

Benesch, Otto. The Art of the Renaissance in Northern Europe. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1947.

Beriot-Salvadore, Evelyne. “L’Emploi du temps d’une écolière à Anvers, en 1580, d’après La Guirlande des Jeunes filles, par Gabriel Meurier.” Bibliographie d’humanisme et Renaissance 44 (1982): 533–44.

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Amy Orrock, "Homo ludens: Pieter Bruegel’s Children’s Games and the Humanist Educators," Journal of Historians of Netherlandish Art 4:2 (Summer 2012) DOI: 10.5092/jhna.2012.4.2.1