Greuze specialised in painting popular scenes from daily life, rich in detail and moralising or sentimental in content. He invented new subjects and had engravings made after his paintings which ensured a wide audience for his work. When he first exhibited at the Paris Salon his paintings were greatly admired, but he was disappointed to qualify for entrance to the French Academy only as a genre rather than as a history painter. He was born in Tournus and studied in Lyon before moving to Paris. Greuze spent two years in Italy and was inspired by the emotional character of Guido Reni's paintings.