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2020-10-12 23:48:18
PETRAUD, Pierre-Mathurin (1808-1880).
Russian Officers and Cossacks at a Military Outpost in the Caucasus.
Mid-19th Century, 1864. Oil on canvas. Framed (105.5 x 82 cm). The dramatic landscape of the Caucasus was an amphitheatre for Russian military action for most part of the 19th century. With the assistance of Terek and Kuban Cossacks as represented here, the struggle for domination over the local tribesmen did not end until 1864. The mountains may be likened to a mighty fortress, marvellously strong by nature, artificially protected by military works, and defended by a numerous garrison. Written by General A. A. Veliaminov in 1828 in a memoir which advocated the use of powerful military force to subdue the tribes of the north Caucasus. The extension of a fortified line farther and farther towards the high peaks, using it as a base for attacks, was essential to Veliaminov's strategy of conquest. 'The line', as it was often simply called, began in the mid-eighteenth century as a defensive string of forts, Cossack villages, and observation towers. There were even concealed outposts where Cossacks would hide at night; if they heard the approach of threatening groups of tribesmen, they sent a signal to the nearest tower or Cossack village. Then bells would be rung, shots fired, wood bundled with resin soaked tow set ablaze set ablaze as a smoke signal, and Cossacks and troops would rush to break the line. Such an instance of sending out smoke signals across 'the line' is depicted here by the French artist Pierre-Mathurin Pétraud (1808-1880). Originating from Bordeaux where he focused on portraiture he later travelled extensively through the Middle East, Asia Minor and Crimea. The … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: Shapero Rare Books [London, United Kingdom]
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