PEYRON, Jean François Pierre
Belisarius receiving Hospitality from a Peasant who has served under his orders
Jean-François Peyron was one of the great Neoclassical French painters before David became a confirmed figure. The story of Belisarius is one of the exemplary anecdotes which served to enhance the virtue of the men of Antiquity to have them serve as models for the generation before the Revolution. A glorious Byzantine general, Belisarius lost his sight and was reduced to begging in the street until one of his soldiers recognised him and invited him to his home. Dated to 1781, the piece presents all the characteristics of Neoclassicism: a frieze compostion in front of an Antique ornamental decor, the sobriety of the expressions, the austerity of the colours. A young Ingres copied this piece in a drawing he did during his Toulousan training.