Symbol, Theme and Depiction in Jacques-Luis David’s “The Oath of the Horatii”


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Essay #: 072905
Total text length is 8,134 characters (approximately 5.6 pages).

Excerpts from the Paper

The beginning:
Symbol, Theme and Depiction in Jacques-Luis David’s The Oath of the Horatii
There are many paintings that stand out in the canon of art and art history. Jacques-Luis David’s neoclassical painting, The Oath of the Horatii, is one such painting. It is many things: a comment of family versus state, a merging of cultures and a political statement. It is important to study because of its many different comments and the true depth of its message about war, family, violence and culture. It is a painting that marks David’s opinion on the time that he painted it- the late 1700’s-through using an old Roman myth. Truly, The Oath of the Horatii is a great painting that should be appreciated for its in-depth themes and commitment to progress.
The end:
..... also comments on the relationships between men and women, fathers and sons, generations before and generation past. The painting is truly revolutionary and is done in a way where every part is a deliberate opinion or point of view. It compares war of Roman myth to David’s contemporary wartime France, and is positive in its opinion that war is both necessary but also sad. Jacques-Luis David painted a masterpiece that is studied now and will be studied for generations to come.
Works Cited
Bryson, Norman. 1984. Tradition and Desire: From David to Delacroix. USA: CUP Archive.
Cumming, Robert. 2007. Art Explained. USA: Penguin Press.
Hunt, Lynn Avery. 1993. The Family Romance of the French Revolution. California: University of California Press.