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A French gilt bronze equestrian group entitled 'Caesar Franchissant le Rubicon'
A French gilt bronze equestrian group entitled 'Caesar Franchissant le Rubicon'

CAST FROM THE MODEL BY JEAN-LEON GEROME, CIRCA 1900

Details
A French gilt bronze equestrian group entitled 'Caesar Franchissant le Rubicon'
Cast from the model by Jean-Leon Gerome, Circa 1900
On a naturalistic rectangular base inscribed J. L. GEROME and with the foundry inscription SIOT FONDEUR. PARIS and numbered V960, on rectangular siena marble plinth
The bronze: 15¼ in. (38.7 cm.) wide; 15 in. (38 cm.) high; 5¼ in. (13.2 cm.) deep

Lot Essay

Executed in 1900, Gérôme's Caesar franchissant le Rubicon was edited by the Siot-Decauville foundry in two sizes, the present small edition of thirty-eight centimetres and a larger version. The original plaster model of the composition is in the collection of the Musée de Vésoul.
Having defeated the Gauls in 49 BC, Julius Caesar is depicted here on his return to Rome at the banks of the Rubicon River, in northern Italy. Any military crossings of the River had been forbidden by the Roman Republic as a security measure during the on-going civil war under Pompey. Paying no heed to the ruling, Caesar and his armies marched through the river, defeated Pompey at Pharsalus the following year and established the Empire in Rome with himself as its self-appointed head.
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