Catalog Archive
Auction 183, Lot 320

"Karikatur des Europäischen Kriegsschauplatzes",

Subject: Europe, World War I

Period: 1915 (circa)


Color: Printed Color

13.5 x 11.3 inches
34.3 x 28.7 cm
Download High Resolution Image
(or just click on image to launch the Zoom viewer)

This anthropomorphic/zoomorphic map by Fritz Elsner superimposes characters on various countries, with the outline of each country still visible. Text below the map is written in the form of short poems to explain the situation with Germany, France, Belgium, Russia, England and Serbia. Depicted from a German point of view, the Dual Alliance of Germany and Austria are in white, while all other countries are in color. Germany and Austria stretch out their limbs to protect their land and prevent the encroachment of their enemies, while the text for Germany gives a rallying cry: "Bring it on! Many enemies, much honor!" A French soldier kneels before Germany's bayonet and the text explains that France "started as a real rooster with a hateful breast, wanting to devour Germany, but shall not succeed." Russia is a giant soldier lurching towards Germany with a ferocious army of bears (and a bottle of vodka in his pocket) with the explanation that Russia "Thought he would easily put the German warriors in his sack, but instead got thrashed, more and always more!"

This rare piece of patriotic propaganda was intended to ease German concerns about the war and convince them that Germany had the upper hand and would defeat their foes. Published by F. Klotz and G. Cremer in Cologne.


Condition: A

Clean and bright with some creasing along the edges of the sheet, a couple of tiny edge tears that have been archivally repaired, and remnants of hinge tape on verso.

Estimate: $1,200 - $1,500

Sold for: $725

Closed on 6/9/2021