Dou was one of the first of Rembrandt’s pupils, yet he soon emancipated himself of his influence, and when he returned from Amsterdam to his native Leiden he created his own style, based on refined and elegant brushwork. Finished down to the smallest detail, his paintings soon enjoyed success with collectors – his clientele was very well-to-do and he belonged to the best paid artists in his time. Before 1665, this painting was owned by an important art collector Johan de Bye. As is obvious even after a recent restoration, the original size of the panel was smaller, featuring only the view of the young lady. On the left, we can see a river canal and the city gate Bluawpoort in Leiden, which Dou recorded in his other works, as well. It seems fairly probable that this was the view provided by the windows of his studio. The extension of the original scene by a city veduta was probably due to the wish of the patron. The results of the recent technological research into this work suggest it was executed by one of his assistants, not Dou himself.