MARCELLUS LAROON THE YOUNGER (London 1679-1722 Oxford)
An execution of deserters in Flanders
with inscription ‘at Meldert Camp. 1707./ [...] Execution of Deserters in Flanders. 1707’
graphite, pen and black and brown ink, fragmentary watermark
758 x 11 in. (19.37 x 27.94 cm)
with Christopher Gibbs, 1963.
John Richardson, London.
R. Raines, Marcellus Laroon, London, 1967, p. 124, no. 38, fig. 15.
Aldeburgh, Aldeburgh Festival, and London, Tate Gallery, Laroon, 1967, no. 27, ill.
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Lot Essay

One of the earliest dated drawings by Laroon, the present sheet was executed while he was in the Army, deployed in Flanders. He was attached to a battalion of the First Regiment of Foot Guards, ultimately under the control of the Duke of Marlborough, whose headquarters were at Meldert, between Brussels and Ghent. After this campaign, during which Laroon was wounded in the battle of Oudenarde in July 1707, the Duke gave him a commission as Lieutenant.
This spontaneous sketch, depicting the unfortunate fate of deserters, may well have been inked in later, and the two figures on the right added at that point to give a sense of depth.

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