Franz Messmer/Jakob Kohl: Emperor Franz I Stephan with scholars, oil painting, ca. 1773.

Franz Messmer/Jakob Kohl: Emperor Franz I Stephan with scholars, oil painting, ca. 1773.

Commissioned by Maria Theresa, the painting includes objects that can still be seen in the Natural History Museum today (for example, the emerald, ammonite and rock crystal on the table next to the emperor). The emperor (sitting in the centre) is surounded by the directors of the imperial collections (from left to right): Gérard van Swieten (Court Library), Jean de Baillou, Valentin Jamerey-Duval, and Abbé Marcy.