Federico de Madrazo y Küntz: The battle of Cerignola (April 28, 1503), Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba finds the corpse of Louis d'Armagnac (1835)

(Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain)


The Battle of Cerignola is a part of the Second Italian War (1499–1504). This war was fought between France and Spain about the control of the duchy of Milan and the Kingdom of Naples. In the Battle of Cerignola, the French army was decisively defeated by the Spanish army. On the painting we can see the aftermath of the battle. In the center on horseback there is the commander of the Spanish army, Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba (El Gran Capitán or "The Great Captain"). The Spanish commander is shown the body of the commander of French army, Louis d'Armagnac, Duke of Nemours and Count of Guise who was once the friend and ally of de Córdoba. Cerignola marked the beginning of the rise of the Spanish dominance on European battlefields and was one of the first battles which was won by firearms. This painting is from 1835.

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