Vermeer’s life

1632 Johannes Vermeer born in Delft, to Reynier Vermeer, a silk weaver, art dealer and owner of a small inn.

1641 Reynier Vermeer purchases the “Mechelen”, a large inn on the market square in Delft.

Late in the 1640‘s Vermeer must have begun his apprenticeship since it took an aspiring artist six years of training before becoming a master.

1652 Vermeer’s father dies and he almost certainly inherits the business.

1653 In Dec, Vermeer married Catherina Bolnes, daughter of Maria Thins and registered as a master painter in the St. Luke’s Guild.

1662 Vermeer elected headman of the Board of the St. Lukes Guild, a trade association of artists.

1670 Again elected headman of the Board of the St. Lukes Guild, a trade association of artists.

1672 Vermeer moved his family to Maria Thins’ house on the Oude Langendijk when the art market collapsed after France invaded the Netherlands. Vermeer’s fortune deteriorated very quickly.

1675 Vermeer died and left his wife and eleven children with enormous debts.

1676 Antony van Leeuwenhoek (1632-1723), the microscopist, was named executor for the Vermeer estate.

1677 Sale of Vermeer’s paintings to help satisfy the demands of creditors.

1800‘s Vermeer is “rediscovered” by Joseph Thore. Thore traveled across Europe to find all of Vermeer’s works and his enthusiastic accounts brought Vermeer’s name to the public for the first time.

Vermeer. The complete works. Access: 21 st April 2009.
http://www.mystudios.com/vermeer/vermeer-bio.html