Bosnisch-herzegowinische infanterie, 1895
These are marvellous paintings, and an absolute gift for the FLW enthusiast. Now, I have started an Army Black for FLW ... ok, you can see where this is going, and what is worse, I have remembered that somewhere in the loft I have some Tradition K.u.K. infantry (now out of production). Why are we tormented thus?
The Army Museum in Vienna is a must, and covers a real range of the vanished Empire's glories, with everything from vast canvases depicting forgotten battles, to frighteningly gouged couplas from Great War fortresses on the Italian front. When I visited a couple of years ago, I was almost the only person there, which seemed apt. I wasn't sure if I was the ghost, or whether I was surrounded by the ghosts of K.u.K. Strange, too, how we see things as time passes. At school in the mid-1970s, Serbia was still the gallant country, but after the last set of Balkan horrors, how the popular image of Serbia has changed. And was the arch reactionary, Metternich, right when he warned against the fragmentation of the great multi-national Empire ? And is our latter-day Holy Roman Empire of the EU (but without a single iota of the sheer style of K.u.K., if in possession of all its schlerotic bureaucracy) similarly riding for a fall? But, now I must dream of apfelstrudel and a grosse braune, and my favourite Imperial city - Trieste.