Despite the signature on the base of the present lot identifying Bouchardon as the author, the present lot is a reduction, albeit on an enormous scale, of François Girardon's celebrated equestrian model of Louis XIV. Cast by J. Balthasar Keller and weighing over thirty tons, the monumental original was unveiled in the Place Louis le Grand (later renamed Place Vendôme) on 13 August 1699. It was subsequently destroyed by the populace in 1792 and only one hoof, now preserved in the Louvre, survives from it (Martin, Les Monuments Equestres de Louis XIV, Paris, 1986, pp. 92-117).
That Girardon executed bronze reductions himself is confirmed by René Charpentier's 1709 engraving entitled Gravure de la galerie Girardon, which depicts the reduction supplied for Versailles featured in Girardon's own sculpture collection. Further 18th century reductions are recorded in the Louvre and Versailles, at Vaux-le-Vicomte, the Hermitage, Leningrad and the Wallace Collection, London.
The popularity of this model resulted in the production of numerous 19th century reductions by Parisian bronziers such as Beurdeley and Henri Dasson, the lot being offered here perhaps being one such bronze.