Augustin de Saint-Aubin, French, 1736 - 1807. After a drawing by Charles-Nicolas Cochin the Younger, French, 1715 - 1790. Published by Cochin, rue St. Jacques, vis à vis les Mathurins.
The publication of this image, one of the earliest to appear after Benjamin Franklin's arrival in Paris, was mentioned in French newspapers in the summer of 1777; the portrait was quickly copied in other mediums. Cochin's subtle rendering-showing Franklin glancing to one side with his head slightly turned, his mouth about to open-may have influenced Houdon's later portrayal.