Not in this Case Either, c. 1810-1813, printed 1863
Francisco Goya y Lucientes
etching, aquatint, drypoint, burin, and burnishing on heavy wove paper
Printed by Laurenciano Potenciano
24.5 x 33.8 cm; plate: 15.5 x 20.7 cm
National Gallery of Canada (no. 4159)
As the French suppressed Spanish resistance during the Peninsular War, they were swift to administer harsh justice to their prisoners. Some were shot outright (see "And There Is No Help for It", plate 15), others were hanged en masse on improvised gallows made of tree trunks and then left to rot as an example to others. The French generals ordered executions as a way to gain strategic war advantage. The officer who observes the tragic scene in this print appears to share his commander’s indifference to death.