Bretagne, Claude (& Cie)



Person (Male)

Alternative name or descriptor

  • Photographie des Ecoles [et des Familles]; Photographe des Ecoles belges<65>

Standardized form(s) of name according to other rules


  • Professional


Life dates

Clamecy [Nièvre, F], 1824 - Villejuif [Val-de-Marne F], 1892


1865 Louvain, Rue de Namur, 37 (Fonteyn bookshop)
° 12.06.1824; + 16.2.1892. First name sometimes transcribed "Charles". Originally a schoolmaster before turning to photography. Bretagne came to Belgium to flee justice: he was sentenced in absentia in Paris on 8.7.1864 to one year's imprisonment for making pornographic photographs. "Speciality: groups, stereo cards, microphotographs". Stereoscopic views of the funeral of Monseigneur Pierre de Ram, rector of the "Université Catholique de Louvain": "All 9 views for 12 fr." (Journal de Bruxelles, 23.5.1865).
1865 - 1868 Louvain, Rue de la Station, 101<65-68> or 91<66>
Successor: Dubois Jules Joseph #
This address was his residence in 1865 when he operated in Rue de Namur. On 6.11.1866, he sent a request to the "Commission d'Assistance Publique" in Bruges for permission to photograph the works of Memling. This request was refused. On CVs of groups, one dated 1867 in pencil, "C. Bretagne & Cie. France and Switzerland" and addresses at Levallois - Paris [F], Rue Gravel, 54, Louvain, Rue de la Station, 101 and The Hague [NL], Willemstraat, 2. These CVs bear an additional statement "15th [or 18th] year of foundation". CV at no. 101 dated 14.7.1868. He was listed as having a studio after 1866, Rue de la Station, 21 (probably an error for 91). Recorded as a photographer aged 45 living in Louvain when acting as witness at the wedding of Philippe Klein (see that name) in Brussels on 12.6.1869 and again on a notarial act on 15.11.1869.
1865 - 1871 ca Malines, Rue de la Chaussée, 50
Coexisted with Rue de la Station in Louvain, later with Rue de Tirlemont, 57 in Louvain. Regimental portraits.
1868 ca Bruxelles, Rue Neuve, 15
On CVs, "Bernheim studio".
1868 ca - 1870 ca Louvain, Rue de Tirlemont, 57
Listed as "C. Bretagne, Director". In 1868, he made at least eight stereoscopic views of the Horticultural Exhibition in Louvain. In 1869, he photographed the members of the 11th "Congrès de langue et de littérature néerlandaises" in Louvain. According to André Cresens, no address is recorded in Louvain after 1868. Removed from the Louvain population registry on 20.9.1871.
Established in Paris - Levallois in 1872. He also had a partnership with Jules David from 1873 to 1876 - see entry for David [J.] & Bretagne [C.]. In the 1878 Bottin, "C. Bretagne & Cie, Photographie des Ecoles. Rue Eugénie, 11, Levallois - Perret (Seine). France, Switzerland, Belgium, Holland, enlargements, horses and carriages, enamelling". Still listed as trading in Levallois - Perret in 1880. Bretagne was recorded as a photographer living in Paris [F], Rue Sainte-Apolline, 9 at the wedding of his daughter in Moulins-Engilbert [Nièvre, F] on 11.7.1888. Bretagne predeceased his daughter who died on 21.6.1896. Bretagne had a son, Charles Gustave Auguste (° Surgy [Nièvre, F], 23.7.1844; + Moulins-Engilbert [Nièvre, F], 20.4.1881), recorded of no profession on his death certificate and for whom we have found no evidence of photographic activity.


1865 Louvain, Rue de Namur, 37 (Fonteyn bookshop)
1865 - 1868 Louvain, Rue de la Station, 101<65-68> or 91<66>
1865 - 1871 ca Malines, Rue de la Chaussée, 50
1868 ca Bruxelles, Rue Neuve, 15
1868 ca - 1870 ca Louvain, Rue de Tirlemont, 57


Genres / subject matter






Record source



Level of detail

Dates of creation/revision

SFJ revised 28.6.2017, 24.5.2018, 2.12.2018 & 28.10.2021; SFJ revised 27.2.2021 & 2.3.2022 based on information supplied by M. Demaeght




Maintenance notes