The Paternal Blessing, or the Departure of Basile

A work made of pen and brown ink, brush and black ink, gray wash and graphite, with traces of scraping, on tan laid paper, laid down on tan wove board.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of pen and brown ink, brush and black ink, gray wash and graphite, with traces of scraping, on tan laid paper, laid down on tan wove board.

Date:

c. 1769

Artist:

Jean-Baptiste Greuze
French, 1725-1805

About this artwork

The second half of the 1700s was an age of great sentiment; tears flowed profusely in art and literature. Jean-Baptiste Greuze in particular capitalized on this cult of feeling.
The Paternal Blessing was an illustration for a pictorial narrative by Greuze called Bazile and Thibault, or The Two Educations. It told the story of two brothers, one good and one bad. Reflecting theories of nature versus nurture espoused by the philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712–78), Bazile became a good man because he had been breast-fed as an infant at home, while Thibault became a bad man because he had been sent away to a wet nurse. Here, Bazile receives his father’s blessing before setting out on his own.

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Prints and Drawings

Artist

Jean Baptiste Greuze

Title

The Paternal Blessing, or the Departure of Basile

Origin

France

Date

1759–1805

Medium

Pen and brown ink, brush and black ink, gray wash and graphite, with traces of scraping, on tan laid paper, laid down on tan wove board

Dimensions

373 × 508 mm

Credit Line

Gift of Mrs. Leigh B. Block

Reference Number

1955.1003

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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