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Self-portrait as Le Noyé, (detail, digital enhancement). Paris
1840, 18 October
Direct positive on paper (Bayard process) (cropped)
Société Française de Photographie
The date is on Bayard long caption on reverse of one of the three versions of the selfportrait kept a the SFP, translated:
"... the corpse of the gentleman you see below is that of Mr. Bayard, the inventor of the process you have just seen and whose marvelous results you are about to see. As far as I know, it is about three years since this ingenious and tireless researcher was busy perfecting his invention. The Academy, the King, and all those who saw his drawings, which he found imperfect, admired them as you are admiring them now. This did him a lot of honor and did not cost him a penny. The government, which had given too much to Mr. Daguerre, said it could do nothing for Mr. Bayard and the unfortunate man drowned! Oh! instability of human things! The artists, the scholars, the newspapers have taken care of him for a long time and now that he has been exposed in the Morgue for several days, nobody has yet recognized him or claimed him! Gentlemen and ladies, let's move on to others, lest your sense of smell be affected, for the gentleman's face and hands are beginning to rot, as you can see..."