Prisoners from the Front

Winslow Homer American

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 762

Painted in his New York studio after the war, this work was inspired by the heroism of Homer’s friend Francis Channing Barlow, a Union Army general who captured a division of Confederate soldiers at Spotsylvania, Virginia, in 1864. The artist summarized their confrontation against a ruined Southern landscape, while also implying class differences between the elegant officer in his sharp uniform and the disheveled Confederate troops. In 1869 critic Eugene Benson suggested that the painting transcended a specific event to portray the entirety of the war, noting that the prisoners represented "the elements in our Southern society that fomented and fed the rebellion against a beneficent and unaggressive Government."

#4362. Prisoners from the Front

Prisoners from the Front, Winslow Homer (American, Boston, Massachusetts 1836–1910 Prouts Neck, Maine), Oil on canvas, American

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.