One of these four portrait types includes the present likeness. Here, the queen is depicted in half-length holding a book in her right hand. She wears a red velvet coat trimmed with fur and delicate ruffles, a point lace collar, and an elegant silk-gauze cap. While the prime version of this composition was commissioned in 1785 as a royal gift for the Comte de Choiseul-Gouffier, the French ambassador to Constantinople, the present work is an exceptional example of the royal portraits produced by Vigée Le Brun and her studio in the 1780s.1
1. For a further discussion of the prime version, see J. Baillio, Elisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun, exhibition catalogue, Fort Worth 1982, pp. 59-64, reproduced p. 62. The prime version was sold as part of the Robert Polo Collection, Paris, Ader Picard & Tajan, 30 May 1988, lot 19.
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