• Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Jean d'Aire - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
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Jean d'Aire

Auguste Rodin

(French, 1840-1917)

Signed A.Rodin
Inscribed Alexis Rudier Fondeur. Paris with interior raised signature and apocryphal inscription A monsieur F.M.
Bronze with rich dark patina, with brown and green highlights
Height: 18 7/16" (46.8 cm)

Conceived between 1887 and 1895. This example cast between 1915 and 1917. The Comité Rodin states that at least fifty casts of this model were produced between 1899 and 1960


The individual figure of Jean d’Aire was originally conceived in 1887 and then re-modelled in this reduced size in 1895. This example was cast within Rodin’s lifetime, between 1915 and 1917 by the Alexis Rudier foundry. The Comité Rodin estimates that at least fifty casts of this sculpture were made between 1899 and 1960 by the Perzika, François Rudier, Alexis Rudier and Georges Rudier foundries.

In 1347 the Hundred Years War was raging between England and France. Jean de Froissart’s Chronicles report that, as Edward III took the city of Calais, he displayed the ‘limit of his clemency’ by condemning six of the city’s most prominent citizens to leave their hometown, stating that ‘with these six I shall do as I please, and the rest I will spare’. These men agreed to meet their fate to save their fellow citizens. They were then spared upon request of the Queen of England, who was moved by their bravery. Five-hundred years later, the recognition of their gesture became the subject of one of Auguste Rodin’s most famous sculptural groups: The Burghers of Calais.

The monument is formed of over life size figures of the six men in Jean de Froissart’s account. Rodin started working on the first maquette for the piece in 1885, but delivered the finished work only ten years later, in 1895. In this time lapse, he worked extensively on the definition of each character’s stance and facial expression, immortalising the six men as they walk towards the English camp, leaving Calais behind. Due to the sculpture’s success, Rodin decided to cast bronze reductions of five of the figures composing it, namely Pierre and Jacques de Wiessant, Jean de Fiennes, Eustache de Saint Pierre and Jean d’Aire. The present bronze is a lifetime cast of the latter figure, which was produced during by Rodin’s his favourite foundry, Alexis Rudier, between 1915 and 1917.

Jean d’Aire was the second citizen of Calais to offer himself as a sacrifice to the English forces during the siege of Calais, as Jean de Froissart explains, 'Then another greatly respected and wealthy citizen, who had two beautiful daughters, stood up and said that he would go with his friend, master Eustache de St Pierre'.

As with all the burgers, Rodin modeled Jean d’Aire a number of times. The present work is a reduction of the model used by Rodin in his final group. This differs from the study for the second maquette, which shows the burger carrying a number of keys on a small pillow. Rodin also created a nude study of the figure.

In the present model we see Jean d’Aire carrying the key to the city. Clad in a monks robe his head is held high even in this most defeating of moments. The work is not only the most iconic of all of Rodin’s burgers, but also his most popular. Rodin himself was incredibly pleased with the model, keeping a monumental version in his own possession until his death in 1917. This example is now in the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon.

Works by Auguste Rodin

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Mouvement de danse F


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Mouvement de danse E


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Dosia


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Giganti, Torse Masculin (Torso of Giganti) - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

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Étude pour le Secret (Study for the Secret) - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Étude pour le Secret (Study for the S...


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Torse Masculin (Masculine Torso) - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Torse Masculin (Masculine Torso)


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Buste de Victor Hugo (Bust of Victor Hugo) - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

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Le Baiser (The Kiss), 3rd Reduction - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Le Baiser (The Kiss), 3rd Reduction


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Éternelle Idole (Eternal Idol), Petit Modèle - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

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Le Baiser (The Kiss), 2nd Reduction - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Le Baiser (The Kiss), 2nd Reduction


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L'Éternel Printemps (Eternal Spring), 2nd Reduction - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

L'Éternel Printemps (Eternal Spring),...


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Le Baiser (The Kiss), 4th reduction - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Le Baiser (The Kiss), 4th reduction


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L'Éternel Printemps (Eternal Spring), 4th Reduction - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

L'Éternel Printemps (Eternal Spring),...


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Balzac, étude type c (buste) 3ème version, grand modèle - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

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Faunesse Debout (Standing Faunesse), Version au Rocher Simple - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

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L'Éternel Printemps (Eternal Spring), 3rd Reduction - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

L'Éternel Printemps (Eternal Spring),...


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Fugit Amor, Large Model, Second Version - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Fugit Amor, Large Model, Second Version


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Masque de l'Homme au Nez Cassé (Mask of A Man With A Broken Nose) - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Masque de l'Homme au Nez Cassé (Mask ...


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Maquette for the Burghers of Calais - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Maquette for the Burghers of Calais


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Bather with Sandals - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Bather with Sandals


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Main Droite 27 (Right Hand 27) - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Main Droite 27 (Right Hand 27)


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Le Penseur (The Thinker) - Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

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