This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book examines oil paintings on military subjects exhibited at public metropolitan venues in the century 1815-1916. It also examines works of art on military themes in relation to ruling-class ideologies about the army, war and the empire. The book also presents a chronological survey of battle painting, integrated with a study of contemporary military and political history. It discusses the intersection of ideologies about the army and military art and concerns with an examination of genre representations of soldiers. The book describes the relation of English to French military art. It attempts to chart the process of transformation in the images of the army and its soldiers from Waterloo to the eve of the Great War.