There are so many wonderful portraits that have fallen into the public domain that I could easily dedicate a website just to all of them. I don’t generally include them here on Reusable Art unless they are of someone famous. (Famous being defined as someone I have heard of before.)
I had to look up who Madame de Sévigné was before including her portrait here. I just liked the look or the image and thought it might be useful for someone.
In case you are wondering who she was, Marie de Rabutin-Chantal was a French aristocrat who, through her letters, primarily to her daughter, became one of France’s most treasured literary icons. She lived between 1626 and 1696.
The portrait, which accompanied a book of her letters, shows a pretty young woman of means. How much would such a beautifully matched, large set of pearls be worth today? Her hair with it’s series of ringlets must have taken some poor servant hours to complete.
It was included in a book entitled Lettres de Madame de Sévigné from 1846 which did not identify the artist.
This image is copyright free and in the public domain anywhere that extends copyrights 70 years after death or at least 120 years after publication when the original illustrator is unknown.