- Museum number
Portrait of a girl, said to be Anne of Austria; head and shoulders slightly turned to right, looking to front, hair tied back, wearing three bows in her hair matching those on the sleeves, necklace with alternating pearls and triangular pendants, square neckline, collar with petal shapes beneath. 1615
- Production date
Height: 402 millimetres
Width: 308 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Since the date of its acquisition in 1859 this drawing has been considered to be a portrait of the young Anne of Austria, the future bride of Louis XIII. This identification was doubted by Koshikawa in the 2002 exhibition catalogue, who argued that if it was truly made in May 1615, Anne would still have been in Spain (her marriage to Louis only took place in November of that year). As there are no records of Dumonstier travelling to Spain, Anne could not have been portrayed from life. Koshikawa does, however, hint at the possibility that Dumonstier may have made this portrait as a copy after another image, an idea which is also put forward by Lecoeur. The latter points out that in common with diplomatic practice of the period, it is highly likely that a portrait of Anne had been sent to France from Spain, and Dumonstier could have used this as the basis for his drawing. Lecoeur accepts the sitter as Anne.
Dumonstier would make three other portrait drawings of Anne at various points throughout her life. A portrait of her as queen in 1622 (Bibliothèque nationale, Paris, Na 24 rés, fo. 4; Lecoeur 31a) shows her wearing a tiara and a standing ruff with an elaborate collar pinned by a rosette. Another portrait made on 20 January of the same year (Musée des Beaux-Arts, Lyon, inv. B 1305 K; Lecoeur 31b) shows her in a slightly simpler costume with puffed sleeves, while a portrait made on 12 October 1645 (Hermitage, St Petersburg, inv. 4626; Lecoeur 31c) shows her as Queen Mother, wearing widow's weeds after the death of her husband.
When the portrait was entered in the register on its arrival in the Museum, the inscribed date was misread as 26 May. It is in fact 16 May, as pointed out in Lecoeur 2006.
Lit.: H. Kurita and M. Koshikawa, in exhib. cat., Nagoya, Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art and Tokyo, National Museum of Western Art, 'French drawings from the British Museum: from Fontainebleau to Versailles', 2002, no. 22; T. Burns and P. Saunier, 'L'art du pastel', Paris [Citadelles & Mazenod], 2014, p. 23; N. Jeffares, 'Dictionary of pastellists' online, no. J.2868.101.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2002 April-June, Nagoya, Aichi Prefectural Mus of Art, 'French Drawings from the British Museum'
2002 July-Sep, Tokyo, NM of Western Art, 'French Drawings from the British Museum'
2016-17 Sept-Jan, BM, 'French Portrait Drawings' (no cat)
- Acquisition date
- 1859 (14 May)
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number