Laerle, Joris Joostensz.
The Moluccan fleet of the Fifth Expedition sailed to the Indonesian archipelago and back to the Netherlands over the course of two years: 1601 to 1603. Along the way, the crew would frequently catch fish from the oceans and seas that the ships traversed. Many of these were drawn in the journal of the Gelderland under the command of admiral Wolphert Harmensz, giving us insights into the great diversity of species the expedition encountered.
This drawing shows a unicorn fish, which is quite common in the Indian Ocean and Indonesian waters. It is commonly found on reefs. Joris Joostensz. Laerle, artist on board of the Gelderland, likely drew this image of the unicorn fish (Naso brachycentron) in the journal of the flagship Gelderland. It is one of the most impressive images in the journal. Laerle captured the shape and colours of the fish in a very life-like and expressive drawing.Please contact Nationaal Archief for reuse and copyrights.