A Japanese Edo Period Lacquered Copper Plaque

9780 A Japanese Edo period lacquered copper plaque, Mademoiselle LeGras (1591-1660), decorated in hiramakie on a black lacquer background, the reverse inscribed “Fondatrice, et premiere Super.e de la charite, servant des pauvres Malades. decedee a Paris. Le15.Mars1660.agee de 68 ans.” Small lacquer chips to the reverse.

Collection of Soame Jenyns.




Height: 5.5 ins (13.5 cm)

Width: 3.75 ins (9.25 cm)                                                £2,200


Louise Legras-de Marillac (1591-1660), known as Mademoiselle LeGras, co-founded the Order of the Sisters of Charity with Vincent de Paul, dedicated to improving the lives of the poor and sick of Paris establishing hospitals, orphanages and schools. The order survives today.

This portrait is taken from L’Europe illustre, a six volume work by Dreux du Radier published in Paris 1755-1765, containing 593 portraits of famous people throughout the ages. These engravings were widely copied by Japanese lacquerers, for export to Europe.