Edme Bouchardon

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Edme Bouchardon
Design for a Token: Allegory of Peace and Justice triumphing over Strife or Discord
Red chalk on paper; ruled border in brown ink.
sheet: 8 3/4 x 8 5/8 inches (224 x 222 mm); design area: 8 1/2 inches (210 mm), diameter
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1909.
III, 94

This preparatory drawing for one of a series of tokens or "jetons" given by the King on New Year's Day is an allegory of Peace and Justice triumphing over Strife or Discord.


Inscribed and dated in the same red chalk as the drawing within the roundel, "SALUS REI PUBLICAE 1738"; signed in pen and brown ink at lower right, "Ed: Bouchardon".

Charles Fairfax Murray (1849-1919), London and Florence; from whom purchased through Galerie Alexandre Imbert, Rome, in 1909 by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913), New York (no mark; see Lugt 1509); his son, J. P. Morgan, Jr. (1867-1943), New York.

In his capacity as designer for the Académie des Belles Lettres, the position to which he was appointed in 1736, Bouchardon created designs for medals and tokens for the "graveur-médailleurs" who cut dies for the Royal Mint. The subjects and their Latin mottoes were chosen by the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres. The drawings were often mounted on blue paper and presented to the king, Louis XV, who had final approval. This drawing, which is the artist's submission for one of a series of tokens or jetons given by the king on New Year's Day, is an allegory of Peace and Justice triumphing over Strife or Discord. Three women represent the allegorical figures of Peace, holding an olive branch, Justice, holding an upraised sword and scales, and Strife, dead, her flaming torch beside her. A related drawing, "Sketch for a Medal Commemorating the Pacification of Geneva" (New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, repr. Bean 1986, p. 31, no. 18) appears to be an earlier version of the Morgan composition. It has a more elaborate background, with pilasters, columns and a coat-of-arms, but is executed with a freer hand, in a less detailed manner. These drawings were executed in red chalk in order to make counterproofs, and there is a counterproof of the Morgan drawing in the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris.

Associated names: 

Murray, Charles Fairfax, 1849-1919, former owner.
Morgan, J. Pierpont (John Pierpont), 1837-1913, former owner.


Collection J. Pierpont Morgan : Drawings by the Old Masters Formed by C. Fairfax Murray. London : Privately printed, 1905-1912, III, 94, repr.
Charles Fairfax Murray III, no. 94, repr.; Ames 1975 pp.383-4, fig. 4; 1986, p. 31 under no. 18.
Eisler, William. The Dassiers of Geneva: eighteenth-century European medallists. Volume II: Dassier and sons: an artistic enterprise in Geneva, Switzerland and Europe, 1733-1759, Lausanne and Geneva, 2005, pp. 65-73, 88-89 (p. 89, note 296).

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