Portrait of Francis I, King of France
Known in several versions; this is probably the earliest
Joos van Cleve, Netherlandish (active Antwerp and France), c. 1485 - died 1540/41
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Francis I possibly commissioned this portrait in connection with his second marriage, to Eleanor of Austria, or in commemoration of a meeting with King Henry VIII of England. During his long reign (1515-1547) Francis established France as a center of the arts and attracted many famous artists to his court, including Leonardo da Vinci, whose last years were spent there.
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