An original very detailed watercolor drawing of a man who looks to be a commoner, drawn on paper laid on thin card or directly on card, 7 3/4" by 4 1/8" (14" by 11" in modern frame), signed at bottom with the distinctive signature of mid 19th century renowned academic painter and draftsman JEAN LOUIS-ERNST MEISSONIER (1815-1891). The drawing is finely crafted, the lone figure vignetted, the background empty. Meissonier was famous in Europe in his day, that fame buying a lavish lifestyle. His art brought very high prices and he was showered with national awards. The artist epitomized the academic direction of European art, against which the Impressionists were to shortly wage war. His drawings and paintings were tight, with intense attention to detail. Meissonier also created many etchings, similarly detailed. Genre was a favorite subject of the artist, who painted both cavaliers of olden days and more common folk like this gentleman. Condition: paper is browned; old mat lines show around edges; signature and shoes area bleed a bit as if the paper were moist at some point. The drawing is loose under the present mat, needs to be re-mounted. Non-glare glass will be discarded.