Messalina, from Dix sujets aimables dans le goût antique

Les sept péchés capitaux (The Seven Deadly Sins) was the portfolio which made Lambert’s name as an artist-engraver around the time he set up his atelier in Montmartre. It was perfect timing as France started to emerge from the horrors of war, wondering what it might have done to deserve such punishment.

In a trademark set of engravings, including faux eighteenth-century frames and lettering, Lambert presents the seven well-known bogies – la paresse, l’orgueil, la luxure, la gourmandise, l’avarice, l’envie, la colère (sloth, pride, lust, gluttony, avarice, envy, anger) – in an easy-to-understand contemporary context.

As they are so conveniently frameable and have subsequently faded, few complete sets of Les sept peches capitaux have survived in their original colours.