Secessionist Medals

Secessionist Artists - WWI 1914 -1918 => Martin Götze => Topic started by: Rabenauge on December 17, 2019, 08:22:23 AM

Title: War-fury over Verdun
Post by: Rabenauge on December 17, 2019, 08:22:23 AM

Martin Götze  (1916?) 

"Die Kriegsfurie vor Verdun" (War-fury over Verdun).  Cast iron, lightly blackened, 105.7 mm, 137 g.  Edge-punch DS 127  13 (indicating [Freunde der] Deutsche Schaumünze 127, [cast number] 13).  Vorzüglich (extremely fine).

Obverse: Naked war-fury bearing blazing torch in left hand and flaming sword in right, descending in cloud from left over the burning cityscape of Verdun; artist's signature M. Götze upper right. 

Reverse: nine-line inscription GANZ IN ROTE / DUNKELHEIT VERSINKE / ALLES LAND, OB DEM DER / BLUTRAUSCH DAMPFT, / UEBER DAS EIN ROTES / SCHEUSAL STAMPFT, / IN DER HAND DIE / BLANKE MOERDER / ZINKE (Into ruddy gloom shall sink the bloodlust-steaming land; over all a red beast tramples, murder-blade gleaming in its hand) [my translation]; poet's name PETZOLD following inscription lower right.

Cf: Schulman.  1917.  La Guerre Européenne, Catalogue LXVII, p. 68: 657.
Cf: Frankenhuis, M.  1919(?).  Catalogue of Medals - Medalets and Plaques Relative to the World War 1914 - 1919, p. 135: 1075.

Cf: Steguweit, W.  1998.  Das Münzkabinett und die Förderung der Medaillenkunst: Künstlerbriefe 1914-1918 Medaillenedition (Das Kabinett 5), p. 102: 38; pl. 9.

Cf: Kluge, B., and B. Weisser.  2014.  Gold gab ich für Eisen, p. 142: A 64.Cf: Weisser, B.  2017.  "Medallic Art in Germany and the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the First World War" in Phagan, P., and P. van Alfen, The Art of Devastation: Medals and Posters of the Great War, pp. 120 - 121, 113 (fig. 49).

War-furies carrying flaming swords and/or burning torches are often represented in Middle-European art, including medals, around the time of the First World War (see posts on Szántó and Förster).

Although not named, Verdun is recognizable by its distinctive cityscape with the truncated towers of the cathedral on the hill above the river.  The Battle of Verdun lasted from 21 February until 18 December, 1916, and was the bloodiest and longest battle fought between the French and German armies in the First World War.
Alfons Petzold (1882 - 1923) was a self-taught Austrian poet, whose work includes several volumes of war poems, though he himself could not serve for health reasons.  The verse on the medal is part of "Die Erde und der Krieg" from the collection Volk, mein Volk. Gedichte der Kriegszeit (Jena,1915).