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Lion Crushing a Serpent (1832) by Antoine-Louis Barye (1796 - 1875)
Although his contemporaries criticized his style and his choice of animal subjects, Barye is today esteemed as the founder of the Parisian animaliers. The noble lion, representing the new King and the people of France, is shown in a triumphant struggle against the serpent, symbolizing Charles X (reigned 1824–1830) and the ousted Bourbon dynasty. The pair additionally suggests a celestial sanction for Louis-Philippe’s reign by alluding to the constellations of Leo (the lion) and Hydra (the sea serpent), which “ruled the heavens” during the days of the July Revolution (July 27-30, 1830).
The scanned sculpture is a copy made by Guy Hain, who is a French art forger who produced number of fake bronze sculptures. The Lion is located by the entrance of Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek in Copenhagen.
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