This statue by Jones replaced Matthew Cotes Wyatt's gigantic — and much criticized — equestrian statue of Wellington that was taken down and not replaced when the arch moved from its first location opposite Apsley House to Hyde Park Corner in 1882-83. The Angel of Peace Descending on the Chariot of War takes the form of a quadriga (a racing chariot with four horses used in both the ancient Olympic Games in Greece and later in ancient Rome). Since classical times, the quadriga has served as an emblem of victory, appearing on Berlin's Brandenberg Gate and Paris's Arc du Triomphe. The German and French quadrigas form part of major monuments that have become symbols of the cities in which they appear; the British one here sits on a traffic island near Hyde Park and is overshadowed by the more embellished March Arch.
"Quadriga." Wikipedia. 26 August 2006. [A particularly detailed, nicely illustrated entry!]
Last modified 21 August 2006