This demonstration of parental discipline of the Merovingian period remains shocking more than a century after its completion. It says much for the grotes-query of nineteenth-century Salon painting, of which it is so spectacular an example, that 'The sons of Clovis II' is still a collection favourite. Alarmed by her sons' rebellion against their absent father, King Clovis, their mother - the regent Sainte Bathilde - has their tendons cut before sending them, immobilised, downstream on a barge to their fate. Though Luminais foreshadows the salvation of the malefactors in the distant shape of a Benedictine monastery, he is clearly more concerned with their present gruesome predicament. His great success with this painting in the Paris Salon of 1880 was not repeated, its cadaverous sensationalism proving a hard act to follow.
AGNSW Handbook, 1999.
Curator insights - European galleries The sons of Clovis II
The sons of Clovis
Les enervés de Jumièges
oil on canvas
190.7 x 275.8 cm stretcher; 218.8 x 335.0 x 8.5 cm frame
Signature & date
Signed l.l., brown oil "E. Luminais [underlined]". Not dated.
Source unknown, Paris/France, Purchased by the AGNSW in Paris 1886
Referenced in 36 publications
Tom Carment, Look, 'The art that made me', Sydney, Sep 2015, pp 14–16: p 15.
L. Enault., Paris Salon, Article written, Paris, 1890.
Renée Free, AGNSW Collections, 'The Western Heritage, Renaissance to Twentieth Century', pg. 108-172, Sydney, 1994, 108.
Renée Free, Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, 'European', Sydney, 1988, pp 36–56: p 41.
Peter Kingston, Look, 'The art that made me', Sydney, Aug 2016, pp 12–13: p 13.
E. Michel., Revue des Deux Mondes, Article, 1880.
Various, The Pencil Orchids Second Anthology, New South Wales, 1995, cover (illus.).
The Morning Advertiser, 02 Nov 1880.
The Daily Chronicle, 02 Nov 1880.
The Illustrated London News, London, 06 Nov 1880.
Athenaeum, London, 06 Nov 1880.
The Academy, 06 Nov 1880.
The Architect, 06 Nov 1880.
The Times, 10 Nov 1880.
The Graphic, 13 Nov 1880.
Sydney daily telegraph, Sydney, 25 Nov 1880.
Saturday Review, 04 Dec 1880.
The Art Journal, London, 1880, 246.
Author Unknown, Le Petit Francais illustre, cover (illus.).
National Art Gallery of New South Wales: exhibition of continental art, Sydney, 1940. cat.no. 40
Bulletin, Sydney, 13 May 1972.
History and legend in some selected paintings at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 1980, 12 (illus.).
Art and Australia, 'Victorian favourites: a conversation - Elwyn Lynn and Lloyd Rees', pg. 49-56, Sydney, Spring 1984, 49.
Portrait of a Gallery, 'European art in the old courts', pg. 14-23, Sydney, 1984, 19.
Salon and Académie: the charm of tradition: a catalogue of nineteenth-century European salon works, Sydney, 1984, (illus.). no catalogue numbers
Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, Sydney, 1999, col illus p 41.
Les Énervés de Jumièges, 'Le peintre et le tableau', 2007, pp 53–99: p 86, col illus p 75.
Society, 18 Dec 1880.
1880 Catalogue illustré du Salon, 1880, 34 (illus.). cat.no. 2390, as 'Les enerves de Jumieges'
The Globe, 01 Nov 1880.
The Standard, 01 Nov 1880.
The Morning Post, 01 Nov 1880.
The Daily News, 02 Nov 1880.