His subject picture "Murdered," or "The Assassination" (1866), was one of his first successes, and is now in the Lille museum, but he became best known afterwards as a portrait-painter, and as the head of one of the principal ateliers in Paris, where some of the most brilliant artists of a later generation were his pupils.
His "Lady with the Glove" (1869), a portrait of his own wife, was bought for the Luxembourg Museum in Paris. In 1889 he was made a commander of the Legion of Honour. He became a member of the Academie des Beaux-arts in 1904, and in the next year was appointed director of the French academy at Rome in succession to Eugène Guillaume.
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| Friend of Louise Abbéma, Edouard Manet, Ignace-Henri-Jean-Théodore Fantin-Latour and Jean-Désiré-Gustave Courbet|
Students included Maximilien Luce, Takeji Fujishima and John Singer Sargent