Claude-Emmanuel-Joseph-Pierre Pastoret is depicted in the year he became Chancellor of France, the culmination of a brilliant forty-year career in public life. The sitter's pose is relaxed and his face thoughtful and unidealized, but his prestige and power are emphasized by the billowing,...
Claude-Emmanuel-Joseph-Pierre Pastoret is depicted in the year he became Chancellor of France, the culmination of a brilliant forty-year career in public life. The sitter's pose is relaxed and his face thoughtful and unidealized, but his prestige and power are emphasized by the billowing, opulent robes of his office. Pastoret wears the insignia of a Grand Officer of the Order of Saint-Esprit around his neck and the Saint Andrew Cross and Legion of Honor medal on his lapel. Pastoret's son commissioned this portrait from his friend Delaroche, who was primarily a painter of highly detailed historical scenes.
Lower left: P. DelaRoche; Upper right (now barely visible): CLAUDE EMMANUEL JOSEPH PIERRE / MARQUIS DE PASTORET / CHANCELIER DE FRANCE / TUTEUR DES ENFANTS DE FRANCE
By 1829, commissioned from the artist by Amédée-David de Pastoret (b. 1791 - 1857) son of the sitter, Claude-Emmanuel Joseph Pierre, Marquis de Pastoret (b. 1755/6 - d. 1840), Marseilles; 1857, by descent to the granddaughter of the sitter, the Marquise du Plessis Bellière (formerly de Pastoret) [see note 1]; May 10-11, 1897, sold by the estate of the Marquise de Plessis Bellière, Hotel Drouot, Paris, lot 25, possibly purchased by Edgar Degas, (b. 1834 - d. 1917), Paris [see note 2]. By 1900, Pierre Decourcelle (b. 1856 - d. 1926), Paris [see note 3]; May 29-30, 1911, Decourcelle sale, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, lot 11, to the MFA for $6377. (Accession Date: July 6, 1911) NOTES:  According to Jean Guiffrey, "Recent Acquisitions of the Department of Painting" in the MFA Bulletin IX.53 (February 1911), pg. 47, upon her death, the Marquise de Plessis Belliere bequeathed all her property to the Pope. A legal decision overruled her will, leading to the public sale of her possessions in 1897.  According to Guiffrey, Pg. 47, also "The Private Collection of Edgar Degas," Metropolitan Museum of Art (1997), Cat. no. 442, Pg. 50.  P. Decourcelle lent the painting to the Paris Exposition in 1900, no. 230.
Susan Cornelia Warren Fund and the Picture Fund