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THE TRIUMPH OF ALEXANDER.
Whilst Boileau, in one of his Satires, appeared to censure the conquests of Lewis XIV, by blaming Alexander for having mastered the whole world, Le Brun a pliant courtier, was offering the great king the representation of a conqueror enjoying with delight, the fruits of his victories.
This picture, having been executed the last in the series, has often been placed after the Battles of Alexander; but it not probable that Le Brun intended to represent Alexander on his return from India, since he then entered Babylon but with fear. Besides, Quintus Curtius gives no particulars of one of the last events of his hero's life; whilst he relates, that, after the battle of Arbela, when Alexander entered the Capital of Asia, « A great part of the inhabitants of Babylon were on the walls, and a still greater number came out to meet him. Amongst these, was Bagophanes, the keeper of the citadel and treasures of Darius, who, not to be behind hand in adulation with Mazæus, had caused the road to be strewed with flowers, and silver altars to be raised on each side of it, where smoked, with the incense, numberless other perfumes. The King, accompanied by his Captains, entered the Town mounted upon. a Car, and the crowd followed him to the Palace. » This Series of five pictures is formed thus:
478. The Passage of the Granicus;
484. The Battle of Arbela;
491. The Family of Darius;
503. The Triumphal Entry of Alexander into Babylon; 496. The Defeat of Porus.
Width, 22 feet 4 inches; height, 17 feet.