A Peasant Boy Leaning on a Sill

oil painting of smiling young boy leaning on sill

Bartolomé Esteban Murillo
A Peasant Boy Leaning on a Sill, ca. 1675
Oil on canvas
20 1/2 × 15 1/8 in. (52 × 38.5 cm)
The National Gallery, London; Presented by M.M. Zachary, 1826
© The National Gallery, London  


The vivid representation of this jovial boy is related to Murillo’s representation of street urchins in larger canvases. The boy is shown at a window, which implies a space beyond the pictorial realm. It was originally intended to respond to a second painting, Young Girl Lifting Her Veil (in a private collection), with the gaze of the boy directed toward the beautiful image of the girl. The message would have been apparent when they were shown together on the same wall.

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