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Polish Horseman

A work made of etching in black on ivory laid paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of etching in black on ivory laid paper.


c. 1651


Stefano della Bella
Italian, 1610-1664

About this artwork

The Polish winged hussars were the most feared cavalry unit in mid-17th-century Europe. They charged directly at the opposing army in tight formation at full speed, splintering the enemy’s ranks. Constructed out of brightly colored ostrich, goose, or swan feathers and affixed via a wooden arch to the horseman’s back, the wings also created tremendous noise. The clatter and hiss of a legion of these riders thundering down frightened horse and foot soldier alike, and enemies of Poland sometimes surrendered on sight.


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Prints and Drawings


Stefano della Bella


Polish Horseman


Italy (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Etching in black on ivory laid paper


Sheet: 19 × 19 cm (7 1/2 × 7 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Purchased with funds provided by Mr. and Mrs. George B. Young and Prints and Drawings Purchase Account

Reference Number


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