Lost Masterpiece Depicting the Killing of a Trojan Princess Shows Up at the Ritz

This painting by Charles Le Brun dates back to the 17th century

By on January 25th, 2013 13:17 GMT

The staff at the Ritz hotel in Paris have recently came across a painting which dates back to the 17th century and which depicts the killing of Trojan princess Polyxena.

The masterpiece is one of Charles Le Brun's works, and it looks like its being discovered and brought back in the spotlight is the direct result of the fact that said hotel is currently undergoing a thorough renovation which is expected to last for two years and cost an impressive €200 million.

Despite the fact that the painting was first spotted by art specialist and historian Olivier Lefeuvre back in last year's July, it took quite a while before other experts had the chance to look at it and confirm that it was indeed an original Charles Le Brun.

Daily Mail
informs us that this painting used to be on display in a suite where fashion designer Coco Chanel lived together with several Nazi officers during World War II, and that it somehow got lost soon after the liberation of the city.

When asked about how the finding of this 17th century painting made him feel, Olivier Lefreuvre answered as follows: "I thought it was a Le Brun straight away. It was very well preserved. It was really quite moving."

As art experts explain, the idea that this depiction of the killing of the Trojan princess Polyxena belongs to Charles Le Brun is supported by arguments having to do with how the artist used both colors and movement.

Furthermore, it looks like the painting displays the initials CLBF (i.e. Charles Le Brun Fecit) and a date (i.e. the year 1647).

The painting will be auctioned off this coming April, and most people agree that it will likely sell for about €500,000 (over $660,000).

For those unaware, Charles Le Brun was both a painter and an art theorist, and Louis XIV referred to him as "the greatest French artist of all time."

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