HISTORY OF THE SERIES
This tapestry belongs to the series of The Story of Julius Caesar which was often freely mixed with two further sets, The Story of Anthony and Cleopatra and The Story of Zenobia and Aurelian, in order to accommodate sets for large spaces. The Story of Julius Caesar was created before March 1659 and was probably commissioned by the two weavers Gerard van der Strecken and Jan van Leefdael, two of the most important weavers of Brussels at the time, as almost all panels of this series were signed by them or their successors. However, with the signature of Gerard Peemans (d. 1725) on the offered panel, it was probably Peemans who needed to extend a set that he was weaving, so he was able to borrow the cartoons for this panel from van der Strecken and van Leefdael.
Justus van Egmont (d. 1674) was an Antwerp painter who had trained with Peter Paul Rubens (d. 1640) between 1622 and 1625 before moving to Paris and working with Simon Vouet (d. 1649). In 1649 he returned to Southern Netherlands first to Brussels and finally to Antwerp in 1655, establishing himself as a successful designer of tapestries for both cities.
A set of fourteen tapestries from this series mixed with scenes from the Story of Zenobia and Aurelian as well as The Story of Anthony and Cleopatra, but with differing borders and signed by Geraert Peemans and Jan van Leefdael, is in the Art Institute of Chicago (K. Brosens et al., European Tapestries in the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, 2008, pp. 138 - 165).
(Forti Grazzini, op cit., pp. 199 - 200 and Standen, op cit., pp. 206 - 208, K. Brosens et al., European Tapestries in the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, 2008, pp. 138 - 165).