Merchant; art critic, poet; professor at the Amsterdam Rijksacademie, 1876-1889; central figure in the emancipation process of the Roman Catholics of the Netherlands. Alberdingk Thijm received no higher education. He initially went into business. In 1842 he began writing art criticism for De Spectator. He married Wilhelmina Anna Sophia Kerst in 1846. In 1852 he founded the Volks-almanak voor Nederlandse katholieken (The People's Almanac for Dutch Catholics), and in 1855 the Catholic periodical Dietsche Warande.