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Rembrandt van Rijn (15 July 1606 – 4 October 1669) was a Dutch painter and etcher. He is generally considered one of the greatest painters and printmakers in European art history and the most important in Dutch history. His contributions to art came in a period of great wealth and cultural achievement that historians call the Dutch Golden Age.
Having achieved youthful success as a portrait painter, Rembrandt's later years were marked by personal tragedy and financial hardships. Rembrandt's greatest creative triumphs are exemplified especially in his portraits of his contemporaries, self-portraits and illustrations of scenes from the Bible. His self-portraits form a unique and intimate biography.
Because of his empathy for the human condition, he has been called "one of the great prophets of civilization."