Soldiers Frightened by a Phantom, from Disparates, published as plate 2 in Los Proverbios

A work made of etching and burnished aquatint in brown-black on ivory wove paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of etching and burnished aquatint in brown-black on ivory wove paper.

Date:

1816–19, published 1864

Artist:

Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes
Spanish, 1746-1828

About this artwork

This nightmarish image is a conundrum. Soldiers cowering before a towering specter can be interpreted as representing the fear of death or defeat, illustrating the vulnerability of fighters during a time of war. Upon a closer look, one can see a smirking face emerging from the phantom’s sleeve, indicating that the colossal apparition may actually be a hoax. With characteristic irony, Goya mocks meaningless superstitions and irrational fears.

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Prints and Drawings

Artist

Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes

Title

Soldiers Frightened by a Phantom, from Disparates, published as plate 2 in Los Proverbios

Origin

Spain

Date

1816–1819

Medium

Etching and burnished aquatint in brown-black on ivory wove paper

Dimensions

219 x 319 mm (image); 245 x 352 mm (plate); 332 x 497 mm (sheet)

Credit Line

The Charles Deering Collection

Reference Number

1927.3311

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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