War has left behind a blazing inferno. The silhouette of the allegorical figure rises darkly against the flaming red fire the dragon is spewing from his helmet. The rigorous profile view gives the man a look of unwavering determination, so that the dramatic sense of movement makes the events seem inevitable. The Städel acquired the painting during the Second World War. A work dealing with the same subject is also to be found in the Thoma Chapel at the Kunsthalle in Karlsruhe, built from 1905 to 1908. Hans Thoma was the director there for twenty years.
The Norwegian consul and businessman Karl Kotzenberg (1866-1940) rendered outstanding services to the City of Frankfurt in the 1920s through his extensive efforts on behalf of business, culture and education. The financial ruin he suffered in 1929-30 was somewhat alleviated by the financial support of the city and the university. Four years after his death his widow, Anna Kotzenberg (1873-1956), fulfilled the wishes of the former administrator of the Städel and donated several of his artworks to the museum.