Louis XVI Avec Son Confessor Edgeworth, Un Instant avant Sa Mort: Louis the XVI with his Confessor Edgeworth ascending the fatal steps a moment before his death January 21, 1793. This detailed hand-colored etching depicts Louis XVI in the center, his foot on the first step of the scaffold as he turns and asks his executioners to ensure that no insult is made to his confessor Edgeworth whose last words to the king were “Son of Saint-Louis go to Heaven. ” On the right, Antoine-Joseph Santerre, a general in the National guard mounted on horseback, orders the drumming and execution of the king. Louis XVI ( 1754-1793 ) born Louis- Auguste, was the last King of France before the fall of the monarchy during the French Revolution. As Louis mounted the scaffold, it was said he appeared dignified and resigned. He delivered a short speech in which he pardoned “…those who are the cause of my death…. “. He then declared himself innocent of the crimes of which he was accused, praying that his blood would not fall back on France. and before he could say more he was beheaded.
Hand -colored engraving by the English portrait and historical painter and aquatint engraver Charles Benazech ( 1768-1794 ). Prints of his painting of Louis XVI and family, just before the monarch’s execution during the French Revolution, achieved a wide circulation. He was greatly influenced by his experiences in Paris during the French Revolution. He later became a member of the Florentine Academy, and exhibited at the Royal Academy in London in the years 1790 and 1791. Benezach died in London in the summer of 1794, aged just 27 years. This engraving is in good condition with a water stain below the image.