Étienne Carjat (French, 1828-1906)
Henri Monnier, actor, playing the part of Monsieur Prudhomme, circa 1875
Woodburytype with its gelatin mold
Gelatin mold 24.0 x 19.1 cm; Woodburytype 23.8 x 19.0 cm
The playwright, artist, and comic actor Henri-Bonaventure Monnier (1799-1877) created the fictional characters Monsieur et Madamme Prudhomme (honest man) to lampoon the Parisian petite bourgeoisie. From the 1830s to 1850s, Monnier satirized French middle-class manners in theatrical reviews and lithographic caricatures featuring the Prudhommes to the delight of the literary and artistic circles of his day.