Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez: Las lanzas/ The Surrender of Breda (1634-1635)

(Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain)

One of the most famous paintings of Velázquez. The subject of the painting is the surrender of Breda to the Spanish army during the Dutch war of independence, the 80-years war (1568-1648). After a siege of almost 9 months (28 August 1624 – 5 June 1625) the Dutch garrison of Breda finally surrendered the city after a heroic resistance. Because of this, the Spanish commander Ambrogio Spinola, was very mild towards the Dutch. Spinola greeted and embraced the Dutch commander, Justin of Nassau, with a kindly expression and still more kindly words, in which he praised the courage and endurance of the protracted defense. The Dutch troops are standing on the left, the Spanish are on the right. In the background you can see Breda. The town of Breda was retaken by the Dutch army in 1637. Painting from 1634-35