After studying painting in Metz, Jean-Baptiste Leprince entered the Paris studio of François Boucher. He undertook a trip to Russia in 1758, during which he drew and painted everything he observed and noted each detail down in sketchbooks. Following his return to Paris at the end of 1764 Leprince was very successful; Orientalism was then very much in vogue. He was received into the Académie de peinture in 1765, where he presented The Russian Baptism as his reception piece. Diderot did not stint on his praise of the artist. The originality of the settings, the picturesque quality of the scenes represented, and the oddity of the costumes had the attraction of novelty for his Parisian audience. Our painting dates from 1762 and must therefore have been executed during his stay in Russia.