The Leiden fijnschilders were held in the highest regard during the Golden Age. Their fame surpassed even that of such celebrated painters as Rembrandt and Vermeer. Rendered with impressive virtuosity and in minute detail, the works of Gerrit Dou, Frans van Mieris, Godfried Schalcken and Gabriel Metsu fetched exorbitant prices; no distinguished collection could afford to be without one.
Augustus de Strong, elector of Saxony, was particularly fond of the Leiden painters and owned more than eighty of their wonderful pictures.
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