May 18, 2009
May 18, 2009

Egyptian Family (Sketch for "The Battle of the Pyramids")

Egyptian Family (Sketch for "The Battle of the Pyramids")

c. 1835

Part of a set. See all set records

Antoine-Jean Gros

(French, 1771–1835)

Oil on linen

Framed: 377.2 x 154.9 x 12.7 cm (148 1/2 x 61 x 5 in.); Unframed: 353.1 x 132.1 cm (139 x 52 in.); Former: 306.8 x 131.5 cm (120 13/16 x 51 3/4 in.)

John L. Severance Fund 1972.17.2


In 1810, Gros exhibited a massive painting of Napoleon at the 1798 Battle of the Pyramids, one of the rare French triumphs in the failed campaign to conquer Egypt (1789-1801). After Napoleon first fell from power in 1814, the painting went into storage, until the new king Louis-Philippe chose to resurrect it for a history museum in Paris. However, perhaps to diminish Napoleon's significance, the government asked Gros to amplify the original with an addition at each end. This painting incorporates General Kléber, a famously successful military leader who had been excluded from the original painting.


What Is Missing?
Rewriting History
Art as Propaganda
See also

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