17th century Flemish and Dutch paintings

This is a comparative item

Crispijn de Passe I after Maerten de Vos
The Element of Air
Engraving on paper : 200 X 205 mm
Signed by both artists
Circa 1600
London, British Museum
(Nr. 1868,0612.2080)

This is a comparative item

Painting for Sale
Click photo for more details
Anonymous painter from the Low Countries, 1st quarter 17th century
"Gustus, an Allegory of Taste"
About our painting
 
The man in our painting is proposing a small stick of sweet rock candy to a lady. Such a sticks were made of cane sugar, a new commodity that appeared in the Low Countries at the end of the 16th century. It replaced honey as a sweetening agent, first in medicine, but also rapidly in culinary use.
These batons of large semi-transparent crystals were grown slowly over a period of days on sticks or strings suspended in a warm sugar solution. They were flavoured with flower essences such as rose or violet. They would be either sucked or crunched. 
Comparative paintings
Click photos for more details