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Mieris (mēˈrĭs) [key], family of Dutch genre and portrait painters of Leiden. Frans van Mieris, 1635–81, the most important, was the son of a goldsmith and pupil of Gerard Dou. His tiny, meticulous paintings won him distinguished patrons and a lucrative practice. Mieris excelled in the rendering of texture and was an admirable portraitist. Among his numerous well-known works in major museums are Oyster Breakfast (Hermitage, St. Petersburg); Sleeping Girl (Uffizi); and Lady in a Crimson Jacket (National Gall., London). His sons and pupils, Jan van Mieris, 1660–90, and Willem van Mieris, 1662–1747, continued his tradition, but failed to equal him. None of Jan's work is extant. A grandson, Frans van Mieris, 1689–1763, also followed in his steps with only slight success, being better known as an antiquarian and writer.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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