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Letter from Pierre-Antoine Berryer to Eugène Delacroix

Pierre-Antoine Berryer (Paris,1790 - Augerville, 1868)

© Musée Eugène Delacroix / C. Adam

Pierre-Antoine Berryer
(Paris,1790 - Augerville, 1868)

LA 31 631/128
Signed autograph letter
On loan from Archives des musées nationaux
1 p. in-8°

Delacroix, having completed the decoration of the Chapelle des Saints-Anges in the Eglise Saint-Sulpice in July 1861, asked well-known figures and interested friends, like his cousin Pierre-Antoine Berryer (1790-1865), a brilliant lawyer, for their opinions on his work.

"Dear, I saw! I saw! Saw as much as my ignorant eyes can see. I am delighted. My regards, but I am leaving tonight. I will write to you of my trips and expect to see you before you go elsewhere. I maintain that my friendship is the most important," Berryer wrote to Delacroix in August 1861.


Several days before the official public opening of the Chapelle des Saints-Anges in the Eglise Saint-Sulpice, Berryer, a lawyer and cousin of the artist — who had asked him to view his work in late July — finally managed to visit, despite the many cases that kept him busy. The enthusiastic tone of the letter he then wrote to Delacroix reflects his deep affection for his relative, which appears throughout their entire correspondence between 1845 and 1863.

The letters exchanged by Delacroix and Berryer

After the painter’s death, Berryer, who had carefully saved Delacroix’s letters, recovered those he had sent. Nearly 150 letters, which remained in his family and were acquired in 1991 by the Société des Amis d’Eugène Delacroix with the participation of the Archives des Musées Nationaux, have therefore been conserved. It is a rare example of both sides of a correspondence that contains the questions and replies of the two men who were linked not only by blood, but also by intelligence as well shared interests and tastes.

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