This work is a sketch, probably for the large painting of this subject in the Hermitage, St Petersburg.

Minerva (wisdom) is seated on a recumbent lion at the left: she indicates the medallion (empty here, but showing the image of Louis XIV in the St Petersburg painting) to the winged figure of History, whose book is supported on the back of Time.

The commission to paint the St Petersburg allegory came from Cardinal Gualterio (1660 - 1728), Papal Nuncio in France. He evidently presented the work to Louis XIV.

Key facts

Artist
Artist dates
1657 - 1747
Full title
An Allegory of Louis XIV
Date made
about 1700
Medium and support
Oil on canvas
Dimensions
47 x 58.5 cm
Acquisition credit
Bequeathed by Philip Hendy, 1989
Inventory number
NG6521
Location in Gallery