Born in Uzes in southern France in 1840, Ferdinand Roybet was to become perhaps the preeminent French painter of military themes of the nineteenth century. Although now regarded solely as an oil painter, his initial studies were taken at the School of Engraving in Lyon and indeed his early career was spent working on printed forms of art. In 1864 he moved to Paris where he became a pupil to the painter Vibert and it was this training that was to lead to his predilection for painting costume pieces and traditional genre subjects. In 1865 he held his first exhibition at the Salon des Champs-Elysees followed the next year by his debut at the Societe des Aquafortistes. In 1866 he first exhibited at the Paris Salon where his large historical composition depicting Henri III received rave reviews. Over the next fifty years his work was exhibited extensively not only in France but also in Germany, Belgium, and Austria. His attention to detail was extraordinary as can clearly be seen in this important example dating to around 1875. Images of musketeers, cavalry and royal personages make up the bulk of his oeuvre and it is these such images that are housed in many of Europe’s prominent museums particularly those in France and Germany. After a long and distinguished career, Ferdinand Victor Leon Roybet died in Paris on April 10th 1920.