When Nella Oortman knocks on the door of a grand house in the wealthiest quarter of 17th-century Amsterdam, she is full of hopes and dreams. The 18-year-old country girl has come to begin a new life as the wife of rich merchant Johnnas Brandt who has paid off the family’s debt in return for her hand in marriage. Her husband gives her an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet that is a miniature replica of their home—and seems to predict and unravel the future with unsettling precision.

Watch The Miniaturist from WGBH’s Masterpiece tonight at 9pm on WGBH 2.