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And what medium was originally used by the artist, Emile Lassalle, a lithographer and painter of genre scenes? He was born 1813 in Bordeaux France and died in Paris 1871. (I have made a close up scan of his signature and laterally reversed it). Two men both experienced in the world of art have suggested that indeed this magnificent woman was done as a lithograph then copied to this smashing archivally sealed sixth plate masterpiece. Naturally, we all wonder what significance that asp curled around the young woman’s arm might represent. Could this be a highly stylized version of the Egyptian Queen Cleopatra? Or was it a girl Lasalle spied on a French street corner waiting for her carriage? One of the gents I shared the scan with noted, ” That could be an asp and she might be Cleopatra. Those French artists during that time did like to paint the noted romantic historical characters.” The other expert mentioned that Cleopatra would have been very dark skinned, but Lasalle used his artistic license to present her (if this IS Cleopatra) in a more acceptable light. It is an astounding dag with almost surreal reflectance and beauty when the wonderful leather case with one of Pretlove’s floral themes is opened. Two tiny areas of mold mites inhabit the brilliant surface on the left against the mat. The litho was copied by the daguerreotypist McElroy, which is boldly stamped across the bottom of the brass mat, circa 1846-48. He embellished the piece with splashes of color.