This painting depicts the Cavalry Division (dismounted because all the surviving horses had been handed over to the enemy) of the French Imperial Guard marching past Prince Friederich Karl, Commander in Chief of the 2nd German Army at Corny, on the outskirts of Metz, after the unconditional surrender of the French Army by Marshal Bazaine, on 29th October 1870.
The commander of the division, General Desveaux, is saluting (by removing his kepi); Prince Friederich Karl returns the salute. Immediately behind the Prince are Major General von Stiehle, Chief of Staff of the 2nd Army (bearded), and Major General Count (later Prince) Otto von Bismarck, Chancellor of the North German Confederation (soon to be the German Empire). The remaining figures are members of the Staff aides-de-camp (some in Hussar uniform) and, behind, units of the Prussian Guard Corps.
We are grateful to Colonel Paul Willing, Conservateur, Musée de l'Armée, Invalides, Paris for providing this catalogue entry.