56" Barbedienne Cast of Gloria Victis Bronze by Marius-Jean-Antonin Mercie
This extraordinary bronze sculpture, Gloria Victis, by Marius Jean Antonin Mercie (1845-1916), was cast by Barbedienne in the nineteenth century. Number #73 in the 1.4 meter (55 inch) size, the second largest size cast by Barbedienne. Beware of recasts molded from existing bronzes. This work is a rare 19th century cast by Barbedienne, and is priced accordingly. First conceived while Mercie was studying in Rome at the French Academy, it originally modeled where Fame was supporting a victorious warrior in anticipation of a positive outcome to the Franco-Prussian war started in 1870. Following France's defeat, Merci substituted a dying warrior with a damaged saber. It is commonly believed that it represents Mercié's contemporary, Henri Rigault, a sculptor who was killed on the final day of battle. "Gloria Victis!" is a rejoinder to the ancient motto Vae victis! Additional images forwarded upon request.