Medieval Memoria Online

Description - Memorial Object

Crucifixion with devotional portraits of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family ('The Kanis triptych')

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MeMO memorial object ID and name
MeMO memorial object ID 782
Name Crucifixion with devotional portraits of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family ('The Kanis triptych')
Holding institution(s)
Holding institution(s)
  • Nijmegen, Museum Het Valkhof
Category
Type Memorial item (physical object)
Classification Triptych
Short description Triptych showing the Crucifixion with devotional portraits, inscriptions, coat of arms, heraldic shield and saints
Remarks about category Triptych: the composition of the central panel (partially) continues into the interior wings
General date
General date 1500-1550
Artist(s)
Artist(s)
  • Leyden?, Aertgen Claesz. van
Original institution(s)
Original institution [526] Grote of St. Stevenskerk (St Stephen's Church), Nijmegen
Arguments
  • based on research (literature, archival or archaeological research)
Specification The grave(s) of the portrayed person(s) were located here
Still in original institution? no
Location inside the institution
In situ?
(Probable) original location
  • near another memorial object for the commemorated person(s) or relatives
Argumentation
Related memorial objects in the same institution
Additional remarks (original location)
Additional remarks The triptych was probably placed near the grave of Jeliske van Houweningen
Memorial piece
Function
  • liturgical/religious
  • social
  • political
Specification
Additional remarks
Memorial monument or floor slab
Function
Grave findings
Additional remarks
Original function memorial painting; commemorating a family
Change in function
Remarks about function arguments for functions: memorial text on the triptych; documents
Name Kanis-Van Houweningen family
Specification
Members of the commemorated party
Commemorated person(s)
  • [1910] Philippa Kanis (female)
  • [1906] Jacob Kanis (male)
  • [1909] Jeliske van Houweningen (female)
  • [1907] Peter Kanis (Peter Canisius) (male)
  • [1911] four prematurely deceased daughters of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family (female)
  • [1881] Wendel Kanis (female)
Commemorated institution(s)
Relation between commemorated persons nuclear family
Relation specification married couple with a son and six daughters
Additional remarks arguments for identification of commemorated party: text and heraldic shield/coat of arms on the triptych
Name
Composition of the commissioning party
Specification
Members of the commissioning party
Commissioning person(s)
Commissioning Institution(s)
Relation between commissioning party and commemorated party
Relation specification
Additional remarks
Material(s)
  • wood (panel)
Specification oil on panel
Traces of polychromy?
Reuse of older objects
Dimensions (cm)
Height x width x depth
Completeness Complete
Condition
Conservation The triptych was restored in 1987/1988
Technical research
Specification (technical research)
Alterations
Alterations
  • inscription(s) painted over
  • one or more effigies/portraits added
Specification Around 1585, the portrait of Gerard - the eldest son from the second marriage of Jacob Kanis - was painted over the portrait of Peter, the eldest son from Jacob’s first marriage. The text on the predella was overpainted. Furthermore, an inscription was added, see Inscriptions. The overpainting of the portrait was removed in 1987/1988.
Additional remarks
Provenance
Provenance private collection in Belgium until 1975
Marks of ownership
Type(s) of mark(s) of ownership
Specification
  • Begheyn, P.J.; Hamers, N.A., Genealogie van de familie Kanis; de eerste generaties, Numaga 18 (1971), 47-68
  • Begheyn, P.J.; Hamers, N.A., Het geslacht Kanis, Gens Nostra 27 (1972), 281-289, 324-333
  • Bueren, T. van, Leven na de dood: gedenken in de late Middeleeuwen (Turnhout 1999), 114-115, 277
  • Coelen, P.J.G. van der, De gouden eeuw van Gelre. Kunst en cultuur in het oude hertogdom (Geldern 2001), 149-150
  • Filedt Kok, J.P.; Halsema-Kubes, W.; Kloek, W.Th., Kunst voor de beeldenstorm: Noordnederlandse kunst, 1525-1580, vol. II (The Hague 1986)
  • Köhler, N., Natuurwetenschappelijk onderzoek van de Kanistriptiek, Nederlands kunsthistorisch jaarboek 37 (1986), 75-94
  • Lemmens, G.; Begheyn, P.J., Het drieluik van de familie Kanis: een werk van Aertgen van Leyden in Nijmegen? (Nijmegen 1975), 29-35
  • Rogier, L.J.; Hamers, N.A., Jacob Kanis, Numaga 18 (1971), 69-89
Other documentation
Additional remarks
Additional remarks The Kanis triptych was probably removed from the St Stephen's Church when it became a Reformed church in 1579. Six years later, after the Spanish capture of Nijmegen, all elements of Catholic worship were restored. It was around this time that the triptych was altered. The alterations of the text and portrait were in all probablity commissioned by Gerard Kanis (1533-1600), Jacob's eldest son from his second marriage to Wendel van den Bergh. Gerard was a devout Catholic who had fled Nijmegen in 1579 and returned in 1585 to become alderman and mayor of the city. Gerard - who at the time was the head of the Kanis family - probably wished to raise his profile through the triptych.

Lower level of [782] Crucifixion with devotional portraits of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family ('The Kanis triptych')

Indication of part
Indication of part Lower level
Short description
Short description Inscription
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth
Date
Year ca.1526-1530
Specified date
Argumentation
  • based on historical and/or technical research
Specification historical facts
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Nijmegen, Museum Het Valkhof
Collection
Collection identifier 1975.03.27
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Filiation
Filiation
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Interior right wing of triptych of [782] Crucifixion with devotional portraits of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family ('The Kanis triptych')

Indication of part
Indication of part Interior right wing of triptych
Short description
Short description Devotional portraits of Jeliske van Houweningen and six daughters with heraldic shield and St Adrian
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth 96 x 27 x 0
Date
Year ca.1526-1530
Specified date
Argumentation
  • based on historical and/or technical research
Specification Jacob Kanis married his second wife Wendel van den Bergh in 1530, four years after the death of his first wife Jeliske van Houweningen. Considering that the triptych contains no references to Jacob’s second marriage, it is likely that the work was made before 1530, probably on the occasion of the death of Jeliske.
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Nijmegen, Museum Het Valkhof
Collection
Collection identifier 1975.03.27
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Identity
Name Leyden?, Aertgen Claesz. van
Attribution
  • style
Specification attribution(s) on stylistic grounds
Assignment
Role
Specification
Additional remarks
Filiation
Filiation Wendel Kanis is depicted with her husband and children on 'SS Jerome and Stephen with devotional portraits of the Van Triest-Kanis family', see MeMO Memorial Object ID 776.
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Central panel of triptych (front) of [782] Crucifixion with devotional portraits of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family ('The Kanis triptych')

Indication of part
Indication of part Central panel of triptych (front)
Short description
Short description Crucifixion
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth 97 x 67 x 0
Date
Year ca.1526-1530
Specified date
Argumentation
  • based on historical and/or technical research
Specification Jacob Kanis married his second wife Wendel van den Bergh in 1530, four years after the death of his first wife Jeliske van Houweningen. Considering that the triptych contains no references to Jacob’s second marriage, it is likely that the work was made before 1530, probably on the occasion of the death of Jeliske.
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Nijmegen, Museum Het Valkhof
Collection
Collection identifier 1975.03.27
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Identity
Name Leyden?, Aertgen Claesz. van
Attribution
  • style
Specification attribution(s) on stylistic grounds
Assignment
Role
Specification
Additional remarks
Filiation
Filiation
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Interior left wing of triptych of [782] Crucifixion with devotional portraits of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family ('The Kanis triptych')

Indication of part
Indication of part Interior left wing of triptych
Short description
Short description Devotional portraits of Jacob Kanis and son with coat of arms and St Jerome
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth 96 x 27 x 0
Date
Year ca.1526-1530
Specified date
Argumentation
  • based on historical and/or technical research
Specification Jacob Kanis married his second wife Wendel van den Bergh in 1530, four years after the death of his first wife Jeliske van Houweningen. Considering that the triptych contains no references to Jacob’s second marriage, it is likely that the work was made before 1530, probably on the occasion of the death of Jeliske.
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Nijmegen, Museum Het Valkhof
Collection
Collection identifier 1975.03.27
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Identity
Name Leyden?, Aertgen Claesz. van
Attribution
  • style
Specification attribution(s) on stylistic grounds
Assignment
Role
Specification
Additional remarks
Filiation
Filiation He was the brother of Aleid Kanis, who is commemorated in the 'Adoration of the Magi with devotional portraits of Jan van Bon and Aleid Kanis', see MeMO Memorial Object ID 780.
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Portraits

Indication of part
Indication of part Interior right wing of triptych
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait first person from the left
Portrait of
Name Jeliske van Houweningen
Sex female
Argumentation
  • based on text(s) on the memorial object
  • based on heraldry on the memorial object
Specification
Portrait — portraiture
Physical state of the portrayed person alive
Argumentation
Specification
Posture kneeling
Manner of portrayal kneeling before a prie-dieu, folded hands
Portrait — clothing, attributes and insignia
Clothing
Type of clothing
Short description black dress with fur lining, black cloak, black cap worn over a white cap with lappets
Attributes
Attributes
  • rosary
Specification red coral rosary hanging from a belt around her waist
Insignia
Insignia
Specification
Remarks about clothing
Additional remarks
Indication of part
Indication of part Interior right wing of triptych
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait one of the two girls in the foreground
Portrait of
Name Wendel Kanis
Sex female
Argumentation
  • based on literature or archival research
Specification genealogical research
Portrait — portraiture
Physical state of the portrayed person alive
Argumentation
Specification
Posture kneeling
Manner of portrayal folded hands
Portrait — clothing, attributes and insignia
Clothing
Type of clothing
Short description
Attributes
Attributes
  • no general attributes
Specification
Insignia
Insignia
Specification
Remarks about clothing
Additional remarks Philippa and Wendel were the only daughters of Jacob Kanis and Jelisken van Houweningen who were still alive when this triptych was made. It is unclear which portrait represents Philippa and which Wendel.
Indication of part
Indication of part Interior right wing of triptych
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait one of the two girls in the foreground
Portrait of
Name Philippa Kanis
Sex female
Argumentation
  • based on literature or archival research
Specification genealogical research
Portrait — portraiture
Physical state of the portrayed person alive
Argumentation
Specification
Posture kneeling
Manner of portrayal folded hands
Portrait — clothing, attributes and insignia
Clothing
Type of clothing
Short description
Attributes
Attributes
  • no general attributes
Specification
Insignia
Insignia
Specification
Remarks about clothing
Additional remarks Philippa and Wendel were the only daughters of Jacob Kanis and Jelisken van Houweningen who were still alive when this triptych was made. It is unclear which portrait represents Philippa and which Wendel.
Indication of part
Indication of part Interior right wing of triptych
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait on the right, in the back
Portrait of
Name four prematurely deceased daughters of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family
Sex female
Argumentation
  • based on literature or archival research
Specification genealogical research
Portrait — portraiture
Physical state of the portrayed person deceased
Argumentation
  • remarkably smaller person (compared to the rest)
Specification
Posture kneeling
Manner of portrayal
Portrait — clothing, attributes and insignia
Clothing
Type of clothing
Short description
Attributes
Attributes
  • no general attributes
Specification
Insignia
Insignia
Specification
Remarks about clothing
Additional remarks These daughters had already died when the triptych was made
Indication of part
Indication of part Interior left wing of triptych
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait first person from the right
Portrait of
Name Jacob Kanis
Sex male
Argumentation
  • based on text(s) on the memorial object
  • based on heraldry on the memorial object
Specification
Portrait — portraiture
Physical state of the portrayed person alive
Argumentation
Specification
Posture kneeling
Manner of portrayal kneeling before a prie-dieu, folded hands
Portrait — clothing, attributes and insignia
Clothing
Type of clothing
Short description black tabard
Attributes
Attributes
  • no general attributes
Specification
Insignia
Insignia
Specification
Remarks about clothing
Additional remarks
Indication of part
Indication of part Interior left wing of triptych
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait second person from the right
Portrait of
Name Peter Kanis (Peter Canisius)
Sex male
Argumentation
  • based on literature or archival research
Specification genealogical research
Portrait — portraiture
Physical state of the portrayed person alive
Argumentation
Specification
Posture kneeling
Manner of portrayal folded hands
Portrait — clothing, attributes and insignia
Clothing
Type of clothing
Short description brown tabard
Attributes
Attributes
  • no general attributes
Specification
Insignia
Insignia
Specification
Remarks about clothing
Additional remarks This portrait was previously overpainted. Around 1585, the portrait of Peter was replaced with that of Gerard Kanis, Peter's half-brother.

Heraldry

Indication of part
Indication of part Interior right wing of triptych
Place of heraldry
Place of heraldry side of the prie-dieu
Specification of heraldry
Type of heraldry Personal use of family arms (one undivided shield)
Specification
Shape of the shield Late renaissance shield
Specification
Description of the shield In silver a red two-headed eagle - (In zilver een rode dubbele adelaar)
Description of the upper arms (helmet, crest and mantling)
Remarks
Additional parts of the achievement
Type of supporter
Specification
Motto
English translation of the motto
Insignia or attributes
Heraldry belonging to
Heraldry belonging to Van Houweningen
Person details
Person details
  • [1909] Jeliske van Houweningen (female)
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Indication of part
Indication of part Interior left wing of triptych
Place of heraldry
Place of heraldry side of the prie-dieu
Specification of heraldry
Type of heraldry Personal use of family arms (one undivided shield)
Specification
Shape of the shield Late renaissance shield
Specification
Description of the shield In red three vair pales, in a gold chief a running contourny black dog, over all a red label - (In rood drie palen van vair en in een gouden schildhoofd een omgewende rennende zwarte hond overtopt door een rode barensteel)
Description of the upper arms (helmet, crest and mantling) Crest present
Remarks
Additional parts of the achievement
Type of supporter
Specification
Motto
English translation of the motto
Insignia or attributes
Heraldry belonging to
Heraldry belonging to Kanis
Person details
Person details
  • [1906] Jacob Kanis (male)
Additional remarks
Additional remarks The crest was added later by order of Gerard Kanis

Inscriptions

Indication of part
Indication of part Lower level
Place of the inscription
Place of the inscription across the predella
Language(s)
Languages
  • Dutch
Language specification
Transcription
Transcription Int Jaer 1513 op Kersavent sterf meister Jacop Kanis gewesene burgermeister der stadt Nijmegen. Bit Godt voer die ziel. Int Jaer 1526 op Onser Liever Vrouwen Hemelvaertesdach sterf Jelisken ghewesene meister Jacop Kanis huysvrou. Bit Godt voer die ziel
Translation
English translation In the year 1513 on Christmas Eve (December 24) died master Jacob Kanis, former mayor of the city of Nijmegen. Pray to God for the soul. In the year 1526 on the Day of the Assumption of the Virgin (August 15) died Jelisken, former wife of master Jacob Kanis. Pray to God for the soul.
Dutch translation
Lay–out
Lay-out Gothic textualis
Inscription mentioning
Name [1909] Jeliske van Houweningen (female)
Sex female
Argumentation the person is being commemorated
Name [1906] Jacob Kanis (male)
Sex male
Argumentation the person is being commemorated
Additional remarks
Additional remarks • The predella originally contained a text that was divided into two columns. Jelisken was probably commemorated in the left column and Jacob in the right. According to Köhler (1986), the overpainting of the text was probably commissioned by Jacob’s son Gerard Kanis. Considering that the current text is almost similar to the original text, Gerard’s aim could have been to create space in order to have his own memorial text added to the predella after his death. • The date of death of Jacob Kanis is mis-restored: he died in 1543, not in 1513.
Indication of part
Indication of part Interior left wing of triptych
Place of the inscription
Place of the inscription interior left wing (before restoration)
Language(s)
Languages
  • Latin
Language specification
Transcription
Transcription Gerardt aetatis 49
Translation
English translation Gerard at the age of 49
Dutch translation Gerard in de leeftijd van 49
Lay–out
Lay-out
Inscription mentioning
Additional remarks
Additional remarks This text was inscribed on the left wing before its restoration. It refers to Gerard Kanis, whose portrait was painted over the portrait of Peter, Gerard’s half-brother, around 1585.

Saint Portraits

Indication of the part
Indication of the part Interior right wing of triptych
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait Behind or near the portrayed person(s)
Specification of saint
Name Adrian
Sex male
Type of saint
  • unknown
Specification
Attributes
  • torture (weapons/instruments of)
Specification sword; anvil
Gesture
  • holding one or more attributes in his/her hands
Specification
Posture standing
Specification
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Indication of the part
Indication of the part Interior left wing of triptych
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait Behind or near the portrayed person(s)
Specification of saint
Name Jerome (Hieronymus)
Sex male
Type of saint
  • unknown
Specification
Attributes
  • trappings: clothing/attributes of clergy/monks/nuns (incl. liturgical vestments)
  • animal(s) (parts/products of, incl. mythical creatures)
Specification cardinal's staff; cardinal's hat; lion
Gesture
  • holding one or more attributes in his/her hands
  • pointing to a commemorated person
Specification
Posture standing
Specification
Additional remarks
Additional remarks The saint is also depicted in the background of the left wing

Person Description

Personal identification number
Personal identification number 1881
Personal details
Name Wendel Kanis
Sex female
Year/date of birth 1522-1526
Year/date of death 1575
Additional remarks Daughter of Jacob Kanis and Jeliske van Houweningen. In 1542 she married Gaert van Triest, with whom she had at least three sons and four daughters (based on memorial painting). She and her family lived in Nijmegen.
Social standing
Status
Arguments
Specification
Member of a convent
Religious order
Specification
Member of secular clergy
Type of secular clergy
Specification
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Personal identification number
Personal identification number 1906
Personal details
Name Jacob Kanis
Sex male
Year/date of birth ca.1490
Year/date of death 1543/12/24
Additional remarks He married Jeliske van Houweningen in 1519. She died in 1526. In 1530, Jacob married Wendel van den Bergh (d. 1557). He was the brother of Aleid Kanis. Jacob and his family lived in Nijmegen. He was buried in the St. Stevenskerk (St Stephen's Church) in Nijmegen.
Social standing
Status patriciate
Arguments
  • according to literature
Specification alderman and mayor of Nijmegen
Member of a convent
Religious order
Specification
Member of secular clergy
Type of secular clergy
Specification
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Personal identification number
Personal identification number 1907
Personal details
Name Peter Kanis (Peter Canisius)
Sex male
Year/date of birth 1521/05/08
Year/date of death 1597
Additional remarks Born in Nijmegen as son of Jacob Kanis and Jeliske van Houweningen. Also known by his Latin name Peter Canisius. He earned a doctor's degree in philosophy and theology at the University of Cologne. In 1543, after a meeting with Peter Faber (Pierre Lefèvre), Peter became the first Dutchman to join the Society of Jesus. Three years later he was admitted to the priesthood. Peter taught at the universities of Cologne, Ingolstadt, and Vienna. Furthermore, he founded colleges at Munich (1559), Innsbruck (1562), Dillingen (1563), Würzburg (1567), Augsburg, and Vienna. Through his teachings and preachings he played an important role in delaying the advance of Protestantism in the Germann-speaking regions. He spent the last twenty years of his life in Freibourg, where he continued to work after suffering a stroke in 1591. He was buried in the Church of the Jesuit College in Freibourg. He was beatified in 1864, and canonized in 1925.
Social standing
Status secular clergy
Arguments
Specification
Member of a convent
Religious order
Specification
Member of secular clergy
Type of secular clergy (parish or chantry) priest
Specification Jesuit priest and scholar; Doctor of the Catholic Church
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Personal identification number
Personal identification number 1909
Personal details
Name Jeliske van Houweningen
Sex female
Year/date of birth
Year/date of death 1526/08/15
Additional remarks Also known as Aegidia. Daughter of Gijsbert van Houweningen and Petronella. In 1519 Jelisken married Jacob Kanis, with whom she had at least one son and six daughters (based on memorial painting). She was buried in the St. Stevenskerk (St Stephen's Church) in Nijmegen.
Social standing
Status
Arguments
Specification
Member of a convent
Religious order
Specification
Member of secular clergy
Type of secular clergy
Specification
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Personal identification number
Personal identification number 1910
Personal details
Name Philippa Kanis
Sex female
Year/date of birth
Year/date of death 1575
Additional remarks Daughter of Jacob Kanis and Jeliske van Houweningen
Social standing
Status
Arguments
Specification
Member of a convent
Religious order
Specification
Member of secular clergy
Type of secular clergy
Specification
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Personal identification number
Personal identification number 1911
Personal details
Name four prematurely deceased daughters of the Kanis-Van Houweningen family
Sex female
Year/date of birth
Year/date of death
Additional remarks Daughters of Jacob Kanis and Jeliske van Houweningen
Social standing
Status
Arguments
Specification
Member of a convent
Religious order
Specification
Member of secular clergy
Type of secular clergy
Specification
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
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