Part 2: Elizabeth Vigée LeBrun

More on Elisbeth Louise Vigée LeBrun and her extraordinary career...

A skilled portrait painter, she spent her entire adult life living and working in the famous courts of Europe and Russia.

"The Memoirs of Madame Vigée LeBrun" is a very good read and I wholeheartedly recommend it.

Madame Elisabeth, Elisabeth Philippine Marie Helene of France, Louis XVI's sister was born in 1764 and she was guillotined on 20 may 1794.

This is a different colored version of the same woman above. One of the ways a portrait painter in those days made money was to paint multiple copies of their own works.

Before photography, and if a wealthy patron wanted to share their picture with loved ones who lived far far away (travel was difficult), - this was the perfect solution.

This is a portrait of her brother, Etienne Vigee (circa 1773). In later years, Vigee signed over her pension to her brother who did not find financial success. - FK"

Baroness Crussol circa 1785. She was married to one of King Louis XVI's generals. The Baroness holds an opera score by Gluck (perhaps to impress Queen Marie Antoinette who claimed him as her favorite composer?).

Caroline Murat and her daughter Letizia circa 1805. Caroline is Napoleon's youngest sister.

Note that in presenting the above material I drew heavily from the excellent and comprehensive archive devoted to Artist Vigée LeBrun which can be found at

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