Sheet: 41.1 x 55.7 cm (16 3/16 x 21 15/16 in.); Image: 41.1 x 55.7 cm (16 3/16 x 21 15/16 in.)
Bequest of John Bonebrake 2012.282
Vernet celebrated Napoleon and France’s military power at the beginning of the 19th century. He was a specialist in depicting horses-he executed many hunting and racing scenes-as well as army life. Vernet’s beautifully drawn and detailed portrait of a Cossack reveals the artist’s interest in the picturesque costume and the fine craftsmanship of the weapons and tack. Cossacks were groups of predominantly East Slavic people who originally were members of democratic, semi-military communities in Ukraine and southern Russia who protected these borders when the French invaded in 1812.
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