Hendrick Avercamp: Winter landscape Kolf players on the ice (circa 1625)

In the painting we see a nobleman, who is about to hit a ball. On the right, his opponent is watching, together with the magistrate.

Behind the nobleman, the executioner with his axe is ready to cut off the head of the nobleman on the orders of the magistrate if the flask player misses the pole.

In order not to get a mess on the ice, the executioner’s servant is ready behind it with a net in his hand to catch the severed head.

Perhaps a bit irreverent and absolutely not historically justified, but a not unthinkable scenario that Avercamp may have come up with as a somewhat morbid joke.