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Jean Hippolyte Flandrin


FLANDRIN, JEAN HIPPOLYTE French painter, was born at Lyons on March 24, 1809. His father, though brought up to business, had great fondness for art, and became a miniature painter. Hippolyte was the second of three sons, all painters, and two of them eminent, the third son Jean Paul (b. 1811) ranking as a leader of the modern landscape school of France. Auguste (1804-1842), the eldest, passed the greater part of his life as professor at Lyons. After studying for some time at Lyons, Hippolyte and Paul set out to walk to Paris in 1829. They entered the atelier of Ingres, who became their friend for life. At first considerably hampered by poverty, Hippolyte's difficulties were removed by his taking, in 1832, the Grand Prix de Rome for his picture, the "Recognition of Theseus by his Father." On his return from Rome his reputation was es tablished. The works upon which his fame rests are his mural decorations. Of these the principal are in the following churches: St. Severin, St. Vincent de Paul, St. Germain des Pres at Paris, St. Paul at Nismes, the church of Ainay at Lyons. He died of smallpox at Rome on March 21, 1864. There is in his works much of that austerity and coldness which spring from a faith which feels in opposition to the surrounding life. He has been compared to Fra Angelico; but his saints and martyrs seem to express rather austerity of souls convicted of sin than the joy and purity which shine from the work of the early master. He was Ingres' most distinguished pupil, and followed in the paths of the Italian masters with little originality. Only a certain blonde, slightly melancholy face of a maiden is Flandrin's own peculiar interpretation; by transferring his pure principles to portrait painting he acquired a large practice as the painter of the "femme honnete" among the ladies of the Second Empire.


Delaborde, Lettres et Pensees de H. Flandrin (1877) ; L. Flandrin, H. Flandrin (19o3) .

lyons, st and paul