[Double portrait of Emperors Wilhelm II and Franz Josef]
ca. 1909-ca. 1916
In his speech to the German Parliament on 29 March 1909, Chancellor Prince Bernhard von Bolow romantically expressed the relationship of Germany and Austria to each other as that of a loyalty of Nibelungen proportion -- its roots were as old and deep as those medieval traditions whose common history the two nations shared. An allusion so romantically sentimental was inevitably satirized in the press, but the image of enduring loyalty -- "fest und getreu" -- in these double-portraits of Emperors Wilhelm II and Franz Josef sent a powerful message of strength-in-union.