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The title derives from the print made after the composition by Le Bas in 1760. It refers to the French repulse of the British forces at Brest in June 1694. The verses by Charles Moraine, which accompany the print, exhort the belles Vivandières, female camp followers, to feed the needy soldiers. The theme recalls the encampment scenes of Watteau and the military pictures of Dutch seventeenth-century artists such as Wouwermans, which were highly prized by eighteenth-century collectors.
oil on canvas
H 46.7 x W 59.5 cm
acquired by Sir Richard Wallace, 1872; bequeathed to the nation by Lady Wallace, 1897