Marie-Éléonore Godefroid

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Marie-Éléonore Godefroid
Born(1778-06-20)June 20, 1778
Paris, France
Died1849 (aged 70–71)
Paris, France
Known forPainting
The Sons of Marshal Ney

Marie-Éléonore Godefroid (20 June 1778 in Paris – 1849), was a French painter, watercolorist, pastellist, and draughtswoman. Some of her major works include Portraits of the Children of Marshall Duke d'Enghien (1810), Portrait of Queen Hortense with her Children (1812), the Royal Princes, Portrait of the Princesses Louise and Marie d'Orléans, and Portrait of the Prince de Joinville. Godefroid is best known as a portrait painter.


Godefroid was born in Paris and was trained in the Davidian style of painting. She first studied art under her father, the royally-appointed art restorer Ferdinand-Joseph Godefroid. She would go on to become an intructor of arts and music at the Institute of Saint-Germain-en-Laye de Jeanne Campan, where young elite women of the Napoleonic period were trained. In 1795, she quit her post, however, to dedicate herself completely to painting.

Around 1805, she joined the atelier of Baron François Gérard, with whom she would latter collaborate. She joined his household by 1812 as an assistant in his office and studio, as well as a companion for him, is wife, and their nephews.[1] Godefroid was also a student of Jean-Baptiste Isabey who worked in oil, aquarelle, and pastels.

Between 1800 and 1847, she exhibited portraits in nineteen exhibitions at the Paris Salon, winning medals in 1812 and 1824. Notably, in 1810, she exhibited the celebrated Portraits of the Children of Marshall Duke d'Enghien (Portrait en pied des enfans de le maréchal duc d'Elchingen), a full-length portrait of the children of Marshal Ney. The work depicts Ney's eight-year old son Joseph Napoléon, second-oldest son Michel Louis, and two-year old son Eugène in fancy dress.

Some of her other exhibited works included portraits of the children of the Duke of Rovigo and Queen Hortense in 1812, portraits of the children of the Duke of Orleans in 1819 and 1822, and portraits of the Duke of Orleans and Monsieur and Madame de Guiche in 1827. She also portrayed other notable figures including Abd el-Kader, the painter Jacques-Louis David, Jeanne Campan, Germaine de Stael, Talleyrand and Marshal Lauriston, amongst others. She also created several portraits that were not exhibited: the portraits of Mrs Oudenarde, the Latour Maubourg Countess, violinist Pierre Rode, and Camille Jordan, whose portrait was engraved by Mullier.

Godefroid was one of the many women artists that Empress Joséphine de Beauharnais patronized.[1] She also worked as a copyist and reproduced several works for the French government, including the portraits of Louis XVIII and Charles X.


  • Charles Gabet, Louis Charles Deschamps, Dictionnaire des artistes de l'école française au xixe siècle : peinture, sculpture, architecture, gravure, dessin, lithographie et composition musicale, Paris, Vergne, 1831, p. 316-17.


  1. ^ a b DeLorme, Eleanor P. (2002). "Josephine as patroness of the arts". Art & Architecture Source. 162, no. 3: 132–141 – via EBSCOhost.

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