Field-Marshal Sir Douglas Haig, KT, GCB, GCVO, KCIE, Commander-in-Chief, France, From December 15th 1915. Painted at General Headquarters, May 30th 1917

Catalogue number
  • Art.IWM ART 324
Art and Popular Design
Production date
Subject period
  • Support: canvas
  • medium: oil
  • Support: Height 749 mm, Width 635 mm
  • Frame: Depth 50 mm, Height 986 mm, Width 856 mm
Alternative names
  • object category: painting
IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM Gift of the artist, 1918

© IWM (Art.IWM ART 324)

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Object description

image: A head and shoulders portrait of Haig in uniform against an abstract background.


Douglas Haig, born in Edinburgh in 1861, is one of the most controversial figures in modern British military history. Upon the outbreak of the First World War, Haig commanded I Corps in the initially small British Expeditionary Force sent to France in August 1914 under the overall command of Sir John French. As the BEF grew in size, Haig assumed command of First Army and then succeeded French as Commander-in-Chief of the BEF in December 1915. Haig presided over a series of major battles including the Battles of the Somme, Arras, Third Ypres, Cambrai, the German Spring offensives of 1918 and the British advances of the 'Hundred Days' in 1918. He commanded the largest field army that Britain has ever sent to war, a force that increased in size from five Regular divisions at the outbreak of war to around sixty Regular, Territorial and New Army divisions by mid-1916. Haig led this field army to eventual victory. The manner in which he employed this force on the Western Front is still a subject of huge historical debate. Haig died in 1928 aged 66.

History note

Department of Information commission


G.H.Q. 30th MAY 1917. ORPEN

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