Thomas More, after Holbein. By Baron Henri de Triqueti (1803-74). 1838. Bronze relief, with dark brown-black patina, in its original wood frame. Signed and dated: H. De. Triqueti 1838. This is down as "untraced" in the Henry Moore Foundation's list of Triqueti's works (where it is dated only by its exhibition year of 1839), but according to the Sotheby's catalogue,

The original plaster model for this bronze relief, which is probably a unique cast, is in the Musée Girodet in Montargis (inv.no.989.141). The Salon entry reveals it was cast by the firm of Richard, Eck et Durand, one of the leading Parisian foundries of the time. The relief appears to be inspired by the drawing of The Family of Thomas More by Hans Holbein.

Drawing of The Family of Thomas More, by Hans Holbein. Source: Reynolds, p. 22.

Triqueti may well have been inspired by Holbein's drawing, but in fact his composition bears little resemblance to it. It is much more dynamic and evocative, with Sir Thomas featured as a dominant figure, his arm raised, declaiming (surely from the Bible), in full teaching mode, and his family listening intently, some clearly moved by or pondering his words. He has one arm round his wife's shoulder, in an indication of domestic affection, and his two daughters, close to the little table, look younger than they do in Holbein's drawing, increasing the poignancy of the situation (they will soon be deprived of their high-principled father). There is so much of Triqueti's own feeling here.

Commentary by Jacqueline Banerjee. Photograph reproduced here by kind permission of Sotheby's. [You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit their catalogue and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document or cite the Victorian Web in a print one.

Bibliography

"Baron Henri Joseph Francois de Triqueti, French, 1804–1874." "Sotheby's catalogue of 19th & 20th Century European Sculpture," held on 28 June 2007. Web. 24 April 2017.

List of Works (by Triqueti). A Biographical Dictionary of Sculptors in Britain, 1660-1851. Henry Moore Foundation. Web. 24 April 2017.

Reynolds, Myra. The Learned Lady in England. Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin / The Riverside Press Cambridge, 1920. Project Gutenberg. Web. 24 April 2017.


Created 24 April 2017