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The Unfortunate Calas Family

1765
Jean Baptiste Delafosse, French, 1721 - 1806. After a drawing of 1765 by Carmontelle (Louis Carrogis), French, 1717 - 1806
In October 1761, the son of Jean Calas, a Protestant merchant from Toulouse, committed suicide. Rumors that Calas had murdered his son for wanting to convert to Catholicism led to Calas being condemned, tortured, and executed. Among those outraged by the injustice of the Calas case was the philosopher Voltaire, who mounted an international campaign to pressure the French monarchy to alter its verdict posthumously. Jean Calas's conviction was overturned in June 1764 and he was declared innocent the following year. This print was commissioned to be sold by subscription to raise money for the Calas family, portrayed here....

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