Peter Paul Rubens (1577 - 1640)
- The Triumph of Henri IV
- Oil on oak panel
- Image size: 21.5 x 37.2 cm
Frame size: 36.5 x 52 x 4.5 cm
- Inscription: 'CIVIS / VM' i.e. civis romanus sum
- East Drawing Room
- This sketch, together with The Birth of Henri IV (P523) and The Union of Henri IV and Marie de Médicis (P524), are part of a series prepared by Rubens for a cycle of paintings at the Luxembourg Palace in Paris illustrating the Life of Henri IV (see P523 for more information).
Henri de Bourbon (1553-1610) became Henri IV of France in 1589. In 1600, he married the daughter of Francesco, Grand Duke of Tuscany, Maria de’ Medici, by whom he had one son, the future Louis XIII. A Protestant by birth, he converted to Catholicism in 1594 and united France as a Catholic kingdom, thus ending forty years of civil war. The present sketch has a frieze-like composition, with Henri IV dressed in classical military dress holding the palm of victory, drawn in a chariot ‘in the manner of the triumphs of the Romans’.