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(Born Paris, 19 July 1834; died Paris, 27 Sept. 1917). French painter, draughtsman, printmaker and sculptor. He was the son of a wealthy art-loving banker and was initially trained for the law. In 1854, however, he began studying with Louis Lamothe (1822–1869), a pupil of Ingres, who handed on the master's tradition of draughtsmanship. Degas also attended the École des Beaux-Arts, but the most important part of his artistic education was gained through assiduous study of the Old Masters, both in the Louvre and in Italy, where he lived 1856–9 (he had Italian relatives and made several subsequent visits to the country).

Text Source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)