Paintings are the main draw in the Louvre Museum but as one of the world’s largest art museums (at 652,056 square feet, left), it’s easy to miss some of the famous paintings it houses.

Take along this Louvre museum itinerary.  

From some 17,000 pages of art history booksMasterpiece Cards determined which famous paintings are most often cited by these art history writers and pros. From this HUGE database of paintings, we selected the 250 with the most citations. The Louvre paintings in the top 250 (and in Masterpiece Cards) are in bold-faced type.

Based on opinions from forty art historians, these Louvre paintings are must-see:

  • Angelico, Fra. The Coronation of the Virgin, ca. 1430 – 32
  • Boucher, François. Diana Resting after Her Bath, 1742
  • Brueghel, Jan. The Battle at Issus, 1602
  • Brueghel, Pieter The Elder. The Beggars, 1568 (right)
  • Chardin, Jean-Baptiste Siméon. The Return from Market, 1739
  • Clouet, Jean. Portrait of Francis I, 1525-1530
  • Corot, Jean-Baptiste-Camille. Woman in Blue, 1874. Left.
  • Correggio. Venus, Satyr, and Cupid (erroneously called The Sleep of Antiope), ca.1524 – 25
  • Cranach, Lucas. Venus Standing in a Landscape, 1529.  Read about the Louvre’s 2011 purchase of The Three Graces by Cranach.
  • David, Gerard. The Marriage Feast at Cana, ca. 1511


  • David, Jacques-Louis. The Sabine Woman, 1799
  • Delacroix, Eugène. Death of Sardanapalus, 1826
  • Delacroix, Eugène. The Bark of Dante (Dante and Virgil in Hell), 1822
  • Géricault, Theodore. Mounted Officer of the Imperial Guard, 1812
  • Géricault, Theodore. Raft of the “Medusa”, 1818 – 1819.
  • Géricault, Theodore. The Madwoman, ca. 1822
  • Greuze, Jean-Baptiste. L’Accordee du Village (The Village Betrothal), 1761
  • Gros, Antoine-Jean. Napoleon in the Plague House at Jaffa, 1804
  • Hals, Frans. The Gypsy Girl, ca. 1628 – 1630.  Examine and read art analysis of Hals’ The Laughing Cavalier.
  • Holbein, Hans. Erasmus, 1523
  • Ingres, Jean-Auguste-Dominique. Oedipus and the Sphinx, 1808.  Below.

  • Ingres, Jean-Auguste-Dominique. The Turkish Bath, 1862; Grande Odalisque, 1814
  • Ingres, Jean-Auguste-Dominique. Valpincon Bather, 1808
  • Jordaens, Jacob. The Four Evangelists, ca.1625
  • La Tour, Georges de. Joseph the Carpenter, ca. 1642
  • Le Nain, Louis. La Charette (The Cart)
  • Leonardo da Vinci. The Virgin of the Rocks, ca.1485
  • Leonardo da Vinci. The Mona Lisa, ca. 1505  
  • Mantegna, Andrea. Calvary, 1456 – 1459
  • Memling, Hans. Portrait of an Old Woman, ca. 1470-1475
  • Metsys, Quentin. The Banker and His Wife, 1514
  • Poussin, Nicolas. Et in Arcadia ego (Even in Arcadia I am), 1638 – 1639.  Learn about other famous art by Poussin.
  • Poussin, Nicolas. Echo and Narcissus, ca. 1627 – 1628.
  • Prud’Hon, Pierre-Paul. Empress Josephine, 1805.  Left.
  • Quarton, Enguerrand. Pieta of Avignon, ca. 1450
  • Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio). The Virgin and Child with St. John the Baptist, 1507
  • Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio). Baldassare Castiglione, ca.1514 (right).
  • Rembrandt. The Flayed Ox, 1655
  • Renoir, Pierre-Auguste. Le Moulin de la Galette, 1876
  • Ribera, Jusepe de. The Boy with the Clubfoot, 1642
  • Rigaud, Hyacinthe. Portrait of Louis XIV, 1701.
  • Rubens, Peter Paul.  Disembarkation of Marie de’ Medici at the Port of Marselles on 3 November.  Read about other Rubens paintings.
  • School of Fontainebleau.  Diana the Huntress, c. 1550.
  • van Eyck, Madonna with Chancellor Nicolas Rolin, ca. 1435.   Explore other van Eyck works like Arnolfini Portrait and Ghent Altarpiece, two of the most famous artworks in the Renaissance.
  • Veronese (Paolo Caliari). The Marriage at Cana, 1562-63
  • Veronese (Paolo Caliari). The Supper at Emmaus, ca. 1559-60
  • Watteau, Jean-Antoine. Embarkation for Cythera, 1717

Who Says These are Famous Paintings?

Art historians. From some 17,000 pages of art history booksMasterpiece Cards tallied how often each painting was cited by these art history pros. From this database, we selected the 250 with the most votes – those in the top 250 (and in Masterpiece Cards) are in bold-faced type – and made each one into a 4″ by 6″ art history reference card.

See a sample Masterpiece Card!