Attila and his Hordes Overrun Italy and the Arts (1838 – 1847) by Eugene Delacroix

Attila and his Hordes Overrun Italy and the Arts - Eugene Delacroix - 1838 - 1847

Artwork Information

TitleAttila and his Hordes Overrun Italy and the Arts
ArtistEugene Delacroix
Date1838 - 1847
Art MovementRomanticism
Current LocationPalais Bourbon, Paris, France

About Attila and his Hordes Overrun Italy and the Arts

“Attila and his Hordes Overrun Italy and the Arts” is a historical painting by Eugene Delacroix, created between 1838 and 1847. This work is part of the Romanticism art movement and is located in the Palais Bourbon, Paris, France. The painting depicts a scene from the invasion of Italy by Attila the Hun, portraying the chaos and destruction wrought by the invading forces on the Italian land and its cultural heritage.

In the painting, the ferocity and tumult of Attila’s invasion are captured with vibrant and dynamic brushwork typical of the Romantic era. At the center, a fearsome Attila is depicted on horseback, leading his barbaric hordes as they charge through the Italian countryside. His horse, with wild eyes and flared nostrils, tramples over classical statues, symbolizing the threat to civilization and the arts by these invaders. The figures in the foreground convey a sense of despair and defenselessness in the face of overwhelming force; allegorical figures representing the arts lay strewn and damaged among the chaos, emphasizing the cultural tragedy of the invasion. The swirling sky above, a component of the Romantic’s focus on natural power and emotion, completes this depiction of an apocalyptic moment.

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