Doelenplein - Vermeer/
If you were considered ‘prosperous’ in the seventeenth century, you were expected to become a member of the schutterij, the civic guard. Vermeer was a member. The Doelenplein was where ‘de Doelen’ stood. This was the building where the Delft civic guard met. In the Schuttersboek from 1674, Johannes Vermeer is listed as a member of the first squadron (small tactical cavalry unit) of the oranje vendel. Vermeer’s membership connected him with important people, such as collectors and potential customers.
We do not know when the painter joined the civic guard, but Johannes Vermeer used to meet as a member of the Delft civic guard at the spot where the Doelenplein is located today.