Théophile Bra

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Théophile François Marcel Bra
Douai - Cimetiere de Douai, tombe de Theophile Bra (03).jpg
Born(1797-06-23)June 23, 1797

Théophile François Marcel Bra (23 June 1797, Douai - 1863) was a French Romantic sculptor and exact contemporary of Eugène Delacroix. He was deeply involved in the Romantic era through his uncompromising personality and complex spirituality. His fantastical inspiration evokes the universes inhabited by Goya, William Blake or Victor Hugo - he was at one and the same time a Bonapartist and an anglophile, a passionate Christian disciple of Swedenborg and an admirer of Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism.

Douai Subprefecture and commune in Hauts-de-France, France

Douai is a commune in the Nord département in northern France. It is a sub-prefecture of the department. Located on the river Scarpe some 40 kilometres from Lille and 25 km (16 mi) from Arras, Douai is home to one of the region's most impressive belfries. The population of the metropolitan area, including Lens, was 552,682 in 1999.

Romanticism period of artistic, literary, and intellectual movement that started in 18th century Europe

Romanticism was an artistic, literary, musical and intellectual movement that originated in Europe toward the end of the 18th century, and in most areas was at its peak in the approximate period from 1800 to 1850. Romanticism was characterized by its emphasis on emotion and individualism as well as glorification of all the past and nature, preferring the medieval rather than the classical. It was partly a reaction to the Industrial Revolution, the aristocratic social and political norms of the Age of Enlightenment, and the scientific rationalization of nature—all components of modernity. It was embodied most strongly in the visual arts, music, and literature, but had a major impact on historiography, education, the social sciences, and the natural sciences. It had a significant and complex effect on politics, with romantic thinkers influencing liberalism, radicalism, conservatism and nationalism.

Eugène Delacroix 19th-century French painter

Ferdinand Victor Eugène Delacroix was a French Romantic artist regarded from the outset of his career as the leader of the French Romantic school.



From a family that had been sculptors for four generations, Bra studied art in Paris. He won second prize in the Prix de Rome in 1818 and was made a Freemason in 1824 in Douai's "la Parfaite union" lodge. He also belonged to lodges in Paris, Lille and Douai between 1825 and 1840. He left his birthplace of Douai 100 boxes and albums of torrential writings, holding 5,000 drawings associated with the texts. Many sheets from this bequest, now kept in Douai's City Library, have been the subject of exhibitions in the United States and France, such as at Balzac's house, the Musée de la Chartreuse at Douai and the Musée de la vie romantique in Paris.

Prix de Rome French scholarship for arts students

The Prix de Rome or Grand Prix de Rome was a French scholarship for arts students, initially for painters and sculptors, that was established in 1663 during the reign of Louis XIV of France. Winners were awarded a bursary that allowed them to stay in Rome for three to five years at the expense of the state. The prize was extended to architecture in 1720, music in 1803, and engraving in 1804. The prestigious award was abolished in 1968 by André Malraux, the Minister of Culture.

Paris Capital of France

Paris is the capital and most populous city of France, with an area of 105 square kilometres and an official estimated population of 2,140,526 residents as of 1 January 2019. Since the 17th century, Paris has been one of Europe's major centres of finance, commerce, fashion, science, and the arts.

Lille Prefecture and commune in Hauts-de-France, France

Lille is a city at the northern tip of France, in French Flanders. On the Deûle River, near France's border with Belgium, it is the capital of the Hauts-de-France region, the prefecture of the Nord department, and the main city of the European Metropolis of Lille.


Pediment of the Hopital-General de Douai Hopital general de Douai Fronton de Teophile Bra.JPG
Pediment of the Hôpital-Général de Douai

His marble and plaster sculptures are numerous, in Douai's Musée de la Chartreuse, Paris churches and the museums at Versailles, Lille and Valenciennes, many of them being commissions under the Bourbon Restoration and July Monarchy. Others are to be seen on the Église de la Madeleine, Palais du Louvre and the Arc de Triomphe.

Valenciennes Subprefecture and commune in Hauts-de-France, France

Valenciennes is a commune in the Nord department in northern France.

Bourbon Restoration Period of French history, 1814-1830

The Bourbon Restoration was the period of French history following the fall of Napoleon in 1815 until the July Revolution of 1830. The brothers of the executed Louis XVI came to power, and reigned in highly conservative fashion; exiled supporters of the monarchy returned to France. They were nonetheless unable to reverse most of the changes made by the French Revolution and Napoleon. At the Congress of Vienna they were treated respectfully, but had to give up nearly all the territorial gains made since 1789.

July Monarchy kingdom governing France, 1830-1848

The July Monarchy was a liberal constitutional monarchy in France under Louis Philippe I, starting with the July Revolution of 1830 and ending with the Revolution of 1848. It marks the end of the Bourbon Restoration (1814–1830). It began with the overthrow of the conservative government of Charles X, the last king of the House of Bourbon.

Column of the Goddess

The Column of the Goddess is the popular name given by the citizens of Lille (France) to the Memorial of the Siege of 1792. The memorial is still in the center of the Grand′ Place of Lille, and has been surrounded by a fountain since around 1990.

The Hôpital-Général de Douai was set up in 1752 in the French city of Douai.

Galerie des Batailles

The Galerie des Batailles is a 120 metre long and 13 metre wide gallery occupying the first floor of the aile du Midi of the Palace of Versailles, joining onto the grand and petit 'appartements de la reine'. It is an epigone of the Grande galerie of the Louvre and was intended to glorify French military history from the Battle of Tolbiac to the Battle of Wagram.


Jacques de Caso is a French-born American historian who specializes in the literature and history of pre-modern art in Europe, principally late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century French and German neo-classicism and Romanticism.

Hubert Damisch, was a French philosopher specialised in aesthetics and art history, and professor at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris from 1975 until 1996.

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