Charles V appointed Titian court painter in 1533 and raised him to the nobility. This full-length portrait in black court dress was created during the Diet of Augsburg. It is simultaneously a representational picture and character study. The mighty columns, the red carpet and the golden brocade reflect imperial dignity whereas the face of the Habsburg ruler is devoid of any idealisation, clearly revealing his advanced age and fatigue. Here, Titian largely left the execution of this work, which is based on a sketch made in his own hand, to an assistant in his workshop, probably Lambert Sustris.