Gloria Victis! (Glory of the Vanquished)

Maker and role
Artist: Marius-Jean-Antonin MerciƩ, French, 1845-1916
after 1879
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Object detail

height, 55in (139.7cm)
Credit line
Museum purchase with donations made in celebration of William J. Chiego's twenty years as Director
Accession number
Object type
Further information
One of the most admired and editioned sculptures of the late 1800s in France, Gloria Victis! was conceived by Mercie while he was a student at the French Academy in Rome. The sculpture was originally executed with the figure of Fame supporting a victorious soldier, but Mercie replaced him with a defeated soldier upon receiving the news that France had surrendered to Prussia, ending the Franco-Prussian War. Gloria Victis! became an instant classic, its appeal both patriotic and aesthetic. Commemorating heroism in defeat, it served to console the nation after a bitter loss.


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