This image of Franklin departs somewhat from that of most of Houdon's surviving images. Franklin's head is lifted somewhat and turned slightly to his right. He gazes upward. The bust is extended, permitting the chest and upper arms to be included. Franklin's contemporary dress is almost hidden by suggestions of a classical robe wrapped around his shoulders. However, the sculptor has compromised with the classical image, by ending Franklin's upper arms in the sleeves of a contemporary coat. The bust is mounted on a socle. A red wax studio seal is visible on the reverse, leading to the supposition that it may have been sold at the auction of the artist's studio after his death.