Posted 4 July 2017

Art & architecture Exhibitions

July's almanac - The August Portraits of the First Born Sons of our King, 1734

In July's almanac, Minerva, goddess of wisdom, presents the young Louis, Dauphin of France (heir to the French throne) to his seated parents, Louis XV and Marie Leszczyńska.

The figures point towards a family tree with portraits of all the previous royal heirs with the title of Dauphin, from the first, Humbert II (Dauphin from 1333 to 1349). The text along the bottom gives a history of the first born sons. This type of educational almanac would have been perfectly suited for use in a schoolroom.

Family tree of Bourbon dynasty
Almanac for the Year 1734 (The August Portraits of the First Born Sons of our Kings), 1734; Waddesdon (National Trust); acc. no. 2669.3.17. Photo: Mike Fear © National Trust, Waddesdon Manor.

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Posted by Rachel Jacobs, curator.

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