Charity 1707

©EPV/Didier Saulnier

Allegory 1707

The decision to have monumental sculpted decoration on the balustrade and the pediment of the Royal Chapel was taken in around 1705. The carefully chosen subject matter of the decoration mixes allegory with great figures of Christianity. The four evangelists rub shoulders with the twelve apostles, the four Fathers of the Latin Church, the four Fathers of the Greek Church and six allegories of Christian virtue.

Robert le Lorrain (1666-1743)

Date sculpted

2.92 metres, including plinth

Tonnerre stone

Restoration of the Royal Chapel

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Charity is represented wearing a dress and a loosely hanging cloak, which is held in place on her shoulder with a fibula and covers her head like a veil. Her right shoulder and breast are uncovered and she is preparing to feed the baby held in her right arm, and a faint smile can be seen on her face as she looks down at the child. The three upright fingers of her left hand must have once held a heart, which is now missing.

© EPV/Thomas Garnier



A student of Mosnier and Girardon, Robert Le Lorrain received the Prix de Rome in 1689 and entered the Academy in 1700 where he became a professor in 1717, then rector in 1737. He worked on several occasions for the Rohan family at Hôtel de Soubise and on the pediment of the stables at Hôtel de Rohan. Besides the statues for the Royal Chapel, he created the Bacchus in Apollo’s parterre for the park of Versailles. A smooth model, dreamy expression and graceful posture are all features of French Rococo, of which Le Lorrain was one of the greatest masters and which marked his style.

Portrait of Robert le Lorrain

© RMN-Grand Palais (Château de Versailles) / Gérard Blot

Link to the collections website


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