Pierre Paul Prud'hon (French, Cluny 1758–1823 Paris)
Pen and gray ink with brush and brown wash over traces of black chalk
11 3/4 x 8 5/8 in. (29.8 x 21.9 cm)
Harry G. Sperling Fund, 1999
Not on view
Didot initially commissioned Prud'hon to design the frontispiece to The Works of Racine (1801–5) and five illustrations to the play Andromache. This design for Act 2 depicts the heroine embracing her son Astyanax and exclaiming that she still sees her dead husband in his features ("It is you, dear husband, whom I embrace"). This illustration was never published by Didot since the commission for Andromache was ultimately given to Girodet. However, Prud'hon used this drawing as the basis for the painting Andromache and Astyanax, which is in the Metropolitan's collection (25.110.14).
Inscription: Inscribed, by Prud'hon, below, in pen and brown ink: "C'est Hector, disait-elle, en l'embrassant toujours, / voilà ses yeux, sa bouche, et déjà son audace / c'est lui-même, c'est toi cher Epoux que j'embrasse."
Marking: Stamped in purple ink, lower left: owl in a circle with initials N D (stamp of the collector N. Dhikéos, died in 1993; not in Lugt)
Nicos Dhikéos; Vendor: Catherine Dubs (French)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," April 11, 2000–June 25, 2000.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," January 11, 2010–April 11, 2010.
Sylvain Laveissière Pierre-Paul Prud'hon. Exh. cat. New York, 1998, cat. no. under no. 158, p. 215.
Carmen C. Bambach, Colta Ives, Nadine Orenstein, Michiel C. Plomp, Perrin Stein "Recent Acquisitions, A Selection: 1999-2000." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, vol. 58, no. 20, Fall 2000, p. 34, ill.