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Charbonneaux, Jean

    Full Name: Charbonneaux, Jean

    Other Names:

    • Jean Marie Augustin Charbonneaux

    Gender: male

    Date Born: 1895

    Date Died: 1969

    Place Born: Genlis, Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, France

    Place Died: Paris, Île-de-France, France

    Home Country/ies: France

    Subject Area(s): ancient, Ancient Greek (culture or style), Antique, the, archaeology, and Roman (ancient Italian culture or period)


    Archaeologist and head of Greek and Roman Antiquities, Louvre. Charbonneaux served in World War I at the Macedonian front winning a croix de guerre for his bravery. After the war he returned to Greece as a member of the école française d’Athens. His initial publications were in archaeology, the excavations by the French at Delphi. With Fernand Chapouthier (1899-1953) he published the first report on Malia in 1928, reflecting an interest in the pre-classical. Charbonneaux joined the Musée du Louvre in 1926 as a conservator, continuing to publish both scholarly and survey texts, including L’Art égéen in 1929. In 1945 he was appointed head of the department of Greek and Roman antiquities. His Louvre work brought his attention squarely into art history. After his appointment, his publishing focused primarily on objects in the museum and much of his time was devoted to acquisitions. He also taught a course annually at the école du Louvre. Throughout the 1930s and 1940s Charbonneaux published principally on sculpture, including modern sculpture (Maillol and Rodin) which was well represented at the Louvre. Beginning in 1968 he published the sections on sculpture for the prestigious Univers des formes series (Arts of Mankind, English) on Greek sculpture. At age seventy-four and newly elected president of the Académie des inscriptions et belles-lettres, he was killed in a car accident.

    Selected Bibliography

    Les terres cuites recques. Paris: L. Reynaud, 1936; La sculpture grecque classique. Lausanne: La Guilde du livre, 1942-45; La sculpture grecque archaïque. Paris: éditions de Cluny, 1939; Les sculptures de Rodin. Paris, F. Hazan, 1949; Les bronzes grecs. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1958; and Martin, Roland, and Villard, François. Grèce classique (480-330 avant J.-C.). Univers des formes 16. Paris: Gallimard, 1969, English: Classical Greek Art (480-330 B.C.). Arts of Mankind 16. New York: G. Braziller, 1972; Grèce archaïque (620-480 avant J.-C.). Univers des formes 14. Paris: Gallimard, 1968, English: Archaic Greek Art, 620-480 B.C.. Arts of Mankind 14. London: Thames and Hudson, 1971; and Martin, Roland, and Villard, François. Grèce hellénistique (330-50 avant J.-C.). Univers des formes 18. Paris: Gallimard, 1970, English: Hellenistic Art, 330-50 B.C.. Arts of Mankind 18. London: Thames & Hudson, 1973.


    [complete bibliography:] Bibliographie de Jean Charbonneaux. Revue Archeologique ns (1968) p. 4-10; [obituaries:] Devambez, P. Jean Charbonneaux (1895-1969). Revue Archeologique ns (1969) p. 119-20; Cart, G. La Revue du Louvre et des Musees de France 19 no. 2 (1969): 76-8; “Charbonneaux. Jean.” Encyclopedia of the History of Classical Archaeology. Nancy Thomson de Grummond, ed. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1996, vol. 1, pp. 270-71.


    "Charbonneaux, Jean." Dictionary of Art Historians (website).

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