Paul Delaroche was a French painter who achieved his greater successes painting historical scenes. He became famous in Europe for his melodramatic depictions that often portrayed subjects from English and French history. The emotions emphasised in Delaroche's paintings appeal to Romanticism while the detail of his work along with the deglorified portrayal of historic figures follow the trends of Academicism and Neoclassicism. Delaroche aimed to depict his subjects and history with pragmatic realism. He did not consider popular ideals and norms in his creations, but rather painted all his subjects in the same light whether they were historical figures like Marie-Antoinette, figures of Christianity, or people of his time like Napoleon Bonaparte. Delaroche was a leading pupil of Antoine-Jean Gros and later mentored a number of notable artists such as Thomas Couture, Jean-Léon Gérôme, and Jean-François Millet.
Delaroche was born into a generation that saw the stylistic conflicts between Romanticism and Davidian Classicism.