This painting depicts a fierce battle between Rogero, the son of a Christian knight, and Ferrau, a formidable Moorish knight described in the famous Italian epic poem Orlando Furioso by Ludovico Ariosto. Rogero, accompanied by his cavalry, launches an attack on Ferrau in an attempt to defeat him. Rogero is depicted wearing a helmet and a white tunic adorned with a red formé cross on the chest. He brandishes a sword, while Ferrau, depicted as an old man with a white beard and wide eyes, looks back at Rogero. In the background, a red flag with a white formé cross, representing the crusaders, flutters.
This painting was exhibited at the Royal Academy in London in 1876. The composition shows the influence of Rubens' painting "The Hippopotamus and Crocodile Hunt," which itself drew inspiration from Leonardo da Vinci's "The Battle of Anghiari."
Sir John Gilbert, a self-taught English artist, illustrator, and engraver, created this artwork. He demonstrated mastery in various media, including watercolour, oils, and more.
Signed and dated lower right: John Gilbert 1875
Sir D. J. Tata Collection
Sir John Gilbert (1817 – 1897)
Oil on canvas
19th Century CE
111.1 x 160.8 cm