OMG! They’re nekkid!
I thought I had exhausted Google’s Image search on Malplaquet, but I apparently missed this image.
It’s a bit more interesting because it’s a later 18C engraving of the original painting (c. 1713). Its higher-resolution and more stark lines provide a bit more detail. Noteworthy tidbits:
- There’s definitely fighting in them thar’ woods.
- The naked bodies are apparently being picked over by a woman (note the dress), who is fending off a pistol shot from a cavalier. Now I’m imagining women sneaking around the battlefield, dispatching the wounded to more easily acquire their plunder.
- I’m assuming a large part of this particular nakedness relates to the composition of the work, as the woman and the bodies (along with the tree behind it) pretty neatly divide the image into two parts. The divider is more clear in Laguerre’s original, and is a bit muddled in DuBosc’s image because of the checker-red standard.
- DuBosc changed the colors of some of the clothing, even reversing the blue and red on occasion, as with the cavalier shooting at the plunderer. Not sure how to interpret this. Laguerre, for example, has blue coats and red coats working together to lift the logs, whereas DuBosc turns them all red. I’m not sure if Laguerre’s buff coats around the cannon are supposed to be civilians (i.e. wagoneers), or just had different uniforms on…
- The defender’s flag on the right appears to have changed from some kind of large white cross in Laguerre to small (presumably fleur-de-lis) in DuBosc’s engraving.
- The officer on the far left (pointing) also apparently has a horse of gold now. Nice. Alternately, it looks like a lot of the white objects were turned yellow in the engraving (yet the clouds and perruques remain white).
So is all this artistic crap random? Thoughts?