A Soldier on the Field of Battle

A Soldier on the Field of Battle
Artist:
Horace Vernet (French, 1789-1863)
Date:
1818
Medium:
Oil on canvas 
Dimensions:
18-1/16 x 21-5/8 in. (46 x 55 cm) 
Credit Line:
Norton Simon Art Foundation 
Accession Number:
M.1977.26.3.P 
Copyright:
© Norton Simon Art Foundation 
On View
Description

A wounded grenadier of Napoleon’s Imperial Guard has just buried his fallen comrades in the aftermath of the battle of Waterloo. In the tradition of Romantic landscape painting, the solitary figure sits in a ruined landscape, absorbed in his melancholy meditations on the horrors of war. The fiery rays of the sun setting behind clouds and the flashes of lightning seem to heighten the drama of military defeat, which is also signaled by the downturned torches on the original frame.

Provenance:

Louis-Philippe, Duke of Orleans, later King of the French, Chateau de Neuilly, by 1818[?]-1848.
Private collection, England.
[Etablissement Rustique, Vaduz, Leichenstein, consigned to];
[Heim Gallery, Ltd., London, sold 1977 to];
Norton Simon Art Foundation.

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