Portrait of Louis XIII, King of France
c. 1622-25
Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish, 1577-1640)
Not on View

Louis XIII, son of Henry IV and his second wife, Marie de' Medici, was born in 1601 and became king at age nine. Although he was declared of age in 1615, stronger men and especially his mother dominated him. He never learned to rule his kingdom effectively. Nevertheless, Rubens has portrayed the young king with all of the attributes of strength. He is dressed in a polished suit of armor and rests his left hand, enclosed in a gauntlet, on the table next to his plumed helmet, while his right hand grasps a marshall's baton. Attached to a ribbon at his right side is the Cross of the Order of the Saint Esprit.

The portrait of Louis, and its companion portrait of Anne of Austria, were for many years in the collection of the Archduke Leopold William of Austria.


  • Artist Name: Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish, 1577-1640)
  • Title: Portrait of Louis XIII, King of France
  • Date: c. 1622-25
  • Medium: Oil on canvas
  • Dimensions: 46-1/2 x 38 in. (118.1 x 96.5 cm)
  • Credit Line: The Norton Simon Foundation
  • Accession Number: F.1965.1.060.P
  • Copyright: © The Norton Simon Foundation

Object Information

Frederick the Great of Prussia, 1768, by inheritance to;
Wilhelm II of Germany, d. 1941, sold 1928 to;
[Duveen Inc., New York, stock 29280, sold 1965 to];
The Norton Simon Foundation.

Exhibition of Old Masters

  • Cincinnati Art Museum, 1933-11 to

An Exhibition of Sixty Paintings and Some Drawings by Peter Paul Rubens

  • Detroit Institute of Arts, 1936-02-13 to 1936-03-15

Paintings from the 16th to the 18th centuries

  • New York, Duveen Art Galleries, 1946 to

Seventeen Masters of Painting

  • Houston, The Museum of Fine Arts, 1950-01-15 to 1950-02-05

Rubens: A Royal Portrait Artist

  • Musée du Luxembourg, 2017-10-04 to 2018-01-14

Loan Exhibition of Forty-three Paintings by Rubens and Twenty-five Paintings by Van Dyck

  • Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1946-11-19 to 1946-12-22

Rubens and Van Dyck

  • New York, Duveen Art Galleries, 1959 to

Rubens et son temps

  • Paris, Musée de l'Orangerie, 1936-11 to 1937-01

A Loan Exhibition of Fashion Headdress 1450-1943, for the Benefit of New York Infirmary for Women and Children

  • Wildenstein & Co. (New York, N.Y.), 1943-04-27 to 1943-05-27

Lock, Stock and Barrel: Norton Simon's Purchase of Duveen Brothers Gallery

  • Norton Simon Museum, 2014-10-24 to 2015-02-16

Masterpieces of Five Centuries, Forty-Eight Paintings and Sculptures from the Norton Simon Foundation and the Norton Simon, Inc. Museum

  • Houston, Museum of Fine Arts, 1972-10-04 to 1973-11-04
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  • Siple, E., The Burlington Magazine, p. 184, 187
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  • Art Digest, p. 6
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  • Frankfurt, A., Artnews, p. 34-35
  • Millier, A., Art Digest, p. 31
  • Valentiner, W. R., The Art Quarterly, no. 80 p. 160
  • de Hevesy, Gazette des Beaux-Arts, p. 97, 142
  • The Connoisseur, p. 261
  • Willis, R., Western Civilization: An Urban Perspective, p. 36
  • LaFarge, Henry A., Artnews, p. 12
  • Winter, G., Beschreibung aller Seltenheiten der Kunst in dem Koniglichen Schlosse Charlottenburg,
  • Oesterreichs, Matthias, Beschreibung aller Gemälde, Antiquitäten, und anderer kostbarer und erkwürdiger Sachen, so in denen benden Schößern von Sans-Souci wie auch in dem Schloß zu Potsdam und Charlottenburg enthalten sind., 1773, no. 574 p. 97
  • Nicolai, F., Berlin und Potsdam, 1786,
  • Rumpf, J. D. F., Berlin und Potsdam. Eine Beschreibung aller Merkürdigkeiten diesser Städte und ihrer Umgebungen, 1823, p. 227
  • Rooses, M., L'Oeuvre de P. P. Rubens, 1890, no. 980, pl. 302 p. 207
  • Singleton, E., Old World Masters in New World Collections, 1928, p. 176-180
  • Cincinnati Art Museum Bulletin, 1933, p. 127
  • Richardson, E., Detroit Institute of Arts Bulletin, 1936, p. 63
  • Sterling, Charles, Rubens et son temps, 1936, no. 67 p. 124-125
  • An Exhibition of Sixty Paintings and Some Drawings by Peter Paul Rubens, 1936, no. 25
  • Huxley, A., Die Graue Eminenz, 1941,
  • Valentiner, W. R., Loan Exhibition of Fashion in Headdress, 1450-1943, 1943, no. 25
  • Valentiner, W. R., Loan Exhibition of Forty-three Paintings by Rubens and Twenty-five Paintings by Van Dyck, 1946, no. 26
  • Paintings from the 16th to the 18th Centuries, 1946,
  • Held, Julius; and J. Gloris, Rubens in America, 1947, no. 8 p. 27
  • Valentiner, W. R., Bulletin of the Art Division of the Los Angeles County Museum, 1948, p. 28
  • Homes, A., Houston Chronicle, 1950, p. 20
  • Holmes, M., The Connoisseur Yearbook, 1964, pp. 68-69
  • Modell, S., A History of the Western World, 1974, p. 42
  • Huemer, F., Portraits [Corpus Rubenianum Ludwig Burchard, XIX, no. 1], 1977, no. 21a, fig. 77 pp. 138-141
  • Masterpieces from the Norton Simon Museum, 1989, p. 53
  • Moote, A. Lloyd, Louis XIII, the Just, 1989, pl. 2 pp. 265, cover
  • Jaffé, Michael, Catalogo Completo Rubens, 1989, no. 700 p. 270
  • The Open University Art Course, Princes and People: France and the British Isles, 1620-1714. Block 1: Traditional society and the civil wars, 1620s-1640s, 1994, fig. 5 p. 37
  • Campbell, Sara, Collector Without Walls: Norton Simon and His Hunt for the Best, 2010, cat. D50a p. 445
  • Rubens: Portraits princiers, 2017, cat. 40 p. 172, p. 219 ; p. 174 (ill.), Front Cover and Inside of Dust Jacket (ill.)
  • Merle du Bourg, Alexis, L'Objet d'Art, 2017, p. 4, pp. 6-7 ; p. 5 (ill.)

Additional Artwork by Artist

Autograph Letter (Written in Secretary's Hand in Dutch, Signed by Rubens on Verso) Peter Paul Rubens 1618
David Slaying Goliath Peter Paul Rubens c. 1616
Meleager and Atalanta and the Hunt of the Calydonian Boar Peter Paul Rubens c. 1618-19

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