1577 Born in Siegen, Westphalia where his father is exiled from Antwerp having had an injudicious affair with the wife of William of Orange.
1578 The family moves to Cologne.
1588 After the death of Rubens’ father, his mother returns with her family to Antwerp.
1598 Rubens becomes a master in the Antwerp Guild of St Luke.
1600 Travels to Italy where he joins the court of Vincenzo I Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua. Copies many Renaissance works in the duke’s collection.
1602 Rubens is in Rome where he is commissioned to produce three paintings for the church of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme. Studies the work of Michelangelo and Raphael.
1603 The Duke of Mantua dispatches Rubens to Spain to deliver presents to Philip III. While there he paints an equestrian portrait for the king’s minister the Duque de Lerma.
1604 Returns to Mantua.
1605–6 Rubens is in Genoa where he works on various commissions.
1606–8 Working in Rome again where he stays for a time with his brother. Completes a number of important commissions.
1608 Hearing of his mother’s death, Rubens returns to Antwerp. Decides to remain in his home city where he soon receives the patronage of a circle of bourgeois collectors.
1609 Appointed court painter to Archdukes Albert and Isabella. Their connections with other European courts help to elevate and spread Rubens’ already high reputation and he starts to receive commissions from all over Europe. Marries Isabella Brant.
1614 Completes the Descent from the Cross for Antwerp Cathedral.
1625 Rubens visits Paris on a diplomatic mission for Archduchess Isabella. Meets the Duke of Buckingham who commissions two portraits.
1626 His first wife Isabella dies.
1628 In his role as a diplomat Rubens visits Madrid in pursuit of a peace between Spain and England. While there he paints Philip IV on Horseback.
1629 He is in London pursuing his peace mission. Charles I commissions him to paint the ceiling of the Banqueting House. Philip IV appoints him as secretary of the Spanish privy council.
1630 Rubens receives a knighthood from Charles I. Marries the sixteen-year-old Hélène Fourment.
1631 Knighted by Philip IV.
1635 Rubens acquires the estate of Steen near Malines.
1636 Philip IV commissions the first of over 100 scenes from Ovid destined for the king’s hunting lodge.
1640 Dies in Antwerp.
1603 Equestrian Portrait of the Duke of Lerma, Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado
1609 The Artist and his wife, Isabella Brant, Munich, Alte Pinakothek
c1609 Samson and Delilah, London, National Gallery
1610–11 The Raising of the Cross , Antwerp Cathedral
1611 Juno and Argus, Cologne, Wallraf-Richartz Museum
1611–14 Descent from the Cross , Antwerp, Cathedral
1611–14 The Assumption of the Virgin Mary, Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum
1614 The Lamentation, Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum
1615 Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia , Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum
c1616 Portrait of a Carmelite Prior, Birmingham, Barber Institute of Fine Arts
1618 The Union of Earth and Water, Saint Petersburg, State Hermitage Museum
1615–22 A Shepherd and his Flock in a Woody Landscape, London, National Gallery
1625 ‘Le Chapeau de Paille’ - Portrait of Susanna Lunden? London, National Gallery
1622–25 Henri IV Receiving the Portrait of Marie de’ Medicis, Paris, Musée du Louvre
1622–25 The Coronation Marie de’ Medici, Paris, Musée du Louvre
1622–25 Marie de Medici lands at Marseilles, Paris, Musée du Louvre
1622–25 The Exchange of Princesses (Marie de’ Medici Cycle), Paris, Musée du Louvre
1620–25 Portrait of Isabella Brant, Cleveland, Museum of Art
c1625 Stormy Landscape with Philemon and Baucis, Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum
1628–29 The Fall of Man, Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado
1629–30 Peace and War - Minerva Protects Pax from Mars, London, National Gallery
1630 Portrait of Thomas Howard, 2nd Earl of Arundel, London, National Gallery
1632 The Ildefonso Altarpiece , Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum
1633 The Garden of Love, Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado
1635 Apotheosis of James I, London, Banqueting Hall, Whitehall
1635 Portrait of Charles I Hunting, Paris, Musée du Louvre
1632–35 The Judgement of Paris, London, National Gallery
1635 The Three Graces, Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado
1636 Autumn Landscape with a view of Het Steen, London, National Gallery
c1636 The Rainbow, London, Wallace Collection
c1636 Landscape in Flanders, Birmingham, Barber Institute of Fine Arts
1638 The Garden of Love, Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado
1638 A Landscape with a Shepherd and his Flock, London, National Gallery
c1639 Rubens, His Wife Hélène Fourment and their Son , New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art
1639 Diana and Callisto , Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado
1635–40 The Rape of the Sabine Women, London, National Gallery
1635–40 The Fur (portrait of Hélène Fourment), Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum