Une Bacchanale

Entered January 2016; revised April 2021

fing blank


Whereabouts unknown

Medium unknown

Measurements unknown



Paris, collection of Jeanne Baptiste d'Albert de Luynes, comtesse de Verrue (1670-1736). Her sale, Paris, March 27ff, 1737, lot 145: “Vatteau. Un autre tableaux reprt un Bacchanale.” Sold for 5 livres according to the manuscript version of the catalogue in the Frick Art Reference Library, New York.



This painting is not listed in catalogues of Watteau’s oeuvre. However, because it was in the collection of the comtese de Verrue, the noted libertine and blue stocking who owned a large number of paintings by Watteau soon after the artist’s death, there is every reason to believe that this sale reference records a bona fide work by the artist.

It is moot whether it was a playful mythological painting like Les Enfants de Bacchus and Les Enfants de Sylene, or whether it was a regular fĂȘte galante, perhaps one with wine being decanted. Without a description, an engraving, or measurements, nothing specific can be said about the comtesse’s Bacchanale. On the other hand, to be fair, it still needs to be listed in any catalogue of Watteau’s works.