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MARIUS JEAN ANTONIN MERCIÉ (French, 1845-1916)

'Gloria Victis', A Bronze Allegorical Group of an Angel with a Soldier
inscribed 'A. MERCIÉ.' and 'GLORIA VICTIS' and 'F. BARBEDIENNE, Fondeur. Paris' and '607' and impressed with the Collas reduction seal 55½in. (141cm.) high, on pedestal, rich brown patina
Literature
H.W. Janson and P. Fusco, The Romantics to Rodin, Los Angeles County Museum, Los Angeles, 1980, pp. 304-305
H.W. Janson, 19th Century Sculpture, New York, 1985, pp. 190-191
A. Pingeot, A. Le Normand-Romain and L. de Margerie, Museé d'Orsay: Catalogue sommaire illustré des sculpteirs, Paris, 1986, RF1835
P. Kjellberg, Les Bronzes du XIXe Siècle: Dictionnaire des Sculpteurs, Paris, 1987, pp. 488-489

Lot Essay

Mercié's immensely popular model of 'Gloria Victis' garnered acclaim and awards when it was exhibited as a plaster in the Salon of 1874. Conceived during the Franco-Prussian war in 1870, the work exalts the patriotic sentiment of the times. After the disastrous invasion of France, it was no longer appropriate to depict an ode to the victors, and the composition was reworked into the present sustaining image of the winged figure of Fame carrying a young defeated hero.
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