This picture acquires an added interest in view of the rejuvenation of martial enthusiasm in France. The subject symbolises the military glory of the nation, and shows the panoply of war as opposed to its grim realities.

Detaille, who was born in Paris in 1848, was one of the very few pupils taken by Meissonier, whose influence as a military painter at once appealed to him and has affected his work ever since. He began to paint when he left school at the age of eighteen, and his first studies in his master's studio were of military subjects. His first picture exhibited in the Salon (in 1867) showed " A Corner of Meissonier's Studio," but the following year he produced "A Halt," followed in 1869 by " Soldiers at Rest during the Manaeuvres in the Camp of Saint Maur," and thereafter he continued to build up a reputation as a faithful reproducer upon canvas of the details of a soldier's life. " The Dream," which is his best known picture in this country, was painted in 1888.

His portraits, which are associated with military subjects, are also noteworthy. Well known to English picture lovers is his painting showing the late King Edward with the Duke of Connaught at the time when the former was Prince of Wales.

There is a story connected with another picture, " Salut aux Blesses "- considered his best work - which illustrates the sensitiveness of his countrymen on the point of military renown. He had painted, so the tale runs, a picture showing a group of wounded French soldiers passing a Prussian General and his staff, who paid honour to them by a salute. It was represented that the subject would be likely to be unpopular, and the artist painted it again so that the incident showed the French staff saluting the wounded Germans!

From the book "Famous Paintings" Volume 2 printed in 1913.

Large files of this public domain print are available at Stock Photos at Songs of Praise
(Firefox users must click again on the large photo to see the very large image.)

Online "Name the Painting"

Edouard Detaille
at Wikipedia

Jean Baptiste Edouard Detaille

Detaille Military Prints

several paintings by Detaille

Famous Paintings in this Series

James Archer
My Great Grandmother

The Meeting


John Brett
From the Dorsetshire Cliffs

Arnesby Brown
The River Bank

Joseph Clark
Mother's Darling

John Constable
The Hay-Wain

Jean Baptiste Camille
The Fisherman's Hut

Jean Baptiste Camille
A Flood

Leonardo Da Vinci
Monna Lisa

Edouard Detaille
The Dream

Henri Fantin-Latour

Thomas Gainsborough
Queen Charlotte

Thomas Gainsborough
The Market Cart

Jean Baptiste Greuze
The Head of a Girl

Jean Baptiste Greuze

James Clark Hook
Home With the Tide

Alfred William Hunt
Windsor Castle

Josef Israels
The Shipwrecked Mariner

B.W. Leader
The Stream in Summer-time

Madame Vigee Le Brun
Portrait of the Artist

Alphonse Legros
A Canal With a Fisherman

Anton Mauve
Watering Horses

J.L.E. Meissonier
The Cavalier

Sir J.E. Millais
Speak! Speak!

Sir J.E. Mallais
My First Sermon

George Morland
The Reckoning

George Morland
The Inside of a Stable

The Immaculate Conception
of the Virgin

Alfred Parsons
When Nature Painted
All Things Gay

Ralph Peacock
The Sisters

Syndics of the
Cloth Merchants' Guild

Guido Reni
"Ecce Homo"

Sir Joshua Reynolds
Portrait of Mrs. Richard Hoare
With Her Infant Son

Briton Riviere
The Temptation
in the Wilderness

Dante Gabriel
Day Dreams

John Singer Sargent
Miss Ellen Terry
as Lady Macbeth

Lady Stanley
(Dorothy Tennant)
His First Offence

Jan Steen
Grace Before Meat

Marcus Stone
On the Road from
Waterloo to Paris

Constant Troyon
Watering Cattle

H.S. Tuke
"All Hands to the Pumps"

King Philip IV. of Spain

S.E. Waller
Sweethearts and Wives

Thomas Webster
The Smile

Famous Paintings Volume 1
Art Gallery

Famous Paintings Volume 2
Art Gallery

Art Appreciation