Emperor Maximilian mustering his troops by the Austrian artist Maximilian Liebenwein (1869-1926). Despite beeing a typical Art Nouveau painting the influence of the Renaissance engravings by Dürer or Holbein is obvious.
The Death of Gian Maria Visconti by the Italian painter Ludovico Pogliaghi (1857-1950). Pogliaghi depicted here an episode of the local history of Milan, where the young Duke was murdered in front of a church in 1412. The cruel intrigues and fights for power in Renaissance Italy are converted to a kind of romantic Romeo and Juliet scenery.
The surrender of Prince Guatemozin to Hernando Cortes by the American painter Peter Frederick Rothermel (1817-1895). Rothermel shows here the last decisive vivtory of the Spanish conquistador and claims him as a predecessor of US-American history. Cortez appears as a merciful forgiving victor. Maybe it should therfore be mentioned that Guatemozin was later tortured and executed.
Bonaparte at the Pyramides by the French painter Maurice Orange (1867-1916). It's interesting that Orange didn't chose here the heroic military aspect of Napoleon's campaign to Egypt but the scientific exotic one.
Plated by the Italian comic book writer and artist Milo Manara (born 1945). He shows here Joan of Arc the legendary The Maid of Orléans as kindof medieval pin-up. Before someone argues against the decline of history painting he should perharps consider that many aknowledged 19th century painters did more or less the same.
History painting dates back to the Renaissance and was long considered to be the "grand genre". Nevertheless it has its peak in the 19th century forged by Neoclassicism and Romanticism. There it became the artistic contribution in the process of the construction of National Identities of the European and American nations.
At the same time history painting under the influence of historism pretended to be "realistic", to show history how it has been. Above all it was this pretension that led to the great failure of History painting AND Realism at the end of the century.
When artists and their public realized that telling history always will be subjective and a painting will always be an illusion Realism and history painting lost their ground to modern painting.