storians of St. Petersburg State University have studied an album with pencil portraits court Francis I and have established who on them is represented. Scientists tried to correlate drawings to real historic figures since the 19th century, however still it wasn't possible to make it.
The set of the European manuscripts and autographs of the 15-18th centuries, including in French is stored in the National Library of Russia (NLR). The album which has interested historians has got to Russia from San Germaine's abbey — the main state book-depository of pre-revolutionary France. The album with 39 portraits court Francis I has been created in the 16th century by request of the French crown and in large quantities spread around. Pencil drawings belong to masters of the well-known school of the fine arts of Klue — the best court painters. Confidants of the monarch could influence contents of such books: for example, to place there noble persons with whom they communicated and were on friendly terms. It is interesting that near portraits names and titles of high-ranking officials have been entered. However long time wasn't possible to understand signatures.
"The matter is that many proper names were written in medieval France differently therefore today, being even guided by signatures, it is difficult to understand who before us. For this reason pre-revolutionary art critics didn't manage to correlate correctly portraits to real historic figures" — the associate professor of St.Petersburg State University Vladimir Shishkin has explained.
storians of St.Petersburg State University identified almost all portrait gallery which is opened by the image of the king Francis I. Difficulties in experts were caused only by the portrait of the elderly man which isn't supplied with any marks. Having studied details of his suit — quadrangular black биретто and a caftan with a cape — scientists have assumed that in the drawing the chancellor of France is represented, perhaps, it is Guillaume Poylle.