Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon was an eminent naturalist. His Histoire naturelle, générale et particulière, which appeared 1749–1788 in 36 volumes, is still rather popular in antiquarian bookshops. when Drouais painted his portrait in 1753, he wore a velvet coat and an embroidered silk vest. Few paintings show the French men’s fashion of the time in such detail and brilliance.

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