Portrait of a Lady said Portrait of Jeanne de Valois, Comtesse de la Motte (c.1780). Elisabeth-Louise Vigée Le Brun (French, 1755-1842). Oil on canvas.
A certain tendency would have one see in our model, with a somewhat enigmatic smile, the features of the instigator of the Queen’s necklace affair, Jeanne de Valois, Countess de la Motte. It was in 1780 that she had sought the title of Countess and tried to integrate into certain cenacles, a date that might suit the portrait.
Philip was completely enchanted by his 14-year-old bride, and within a
short period of time had given up his mistress. Despite the significant
age difference, Elisabeth was also quite pleased with her husband. (In
letters to her mother, she proclaimed herself to be fortunate to have
married so charming a prince.) Philip enjoyed hosting chivalric tournaments to entertain his wife. [x]
Elisabeth de Valois, daughter of Henri II and Catherine de’ Medici and third wife of Philip II of Spain, died on this day in 1568 at the age of just twenty three. I adore this gorgeous but rather melancholy portrait (a 1605 copy of the 16th century original) of her in the Prado.