A Skirmish between Our Unit and the Germans Near Ilow and Lowicz


This print showing Russians and Germans engaged in close, hand-to-hand combat is from the collection of World War I lubok posters held at the British Library. The caption explains: “At the end of November, the Germans fiercely attacked our positions for two days. Our troops were able to repel all of the attacks along the entire front. We responded with counterattacks using bayonets. In the end, we launched a general offensive and made the enemy flee. We captured four guns, seven machine guns, and many prisoners.” This picture, like many others in the collection, was printed in the Moscow printing house of Ivan Sytin (1851–1934). By the 1880s, Sytin was the most popular and successful publisher of lubok pictures in Russia. He also published cheap popular books for workers and peasants, textbooks, and literature for children. The quality of this print is much better than many images from other printing houses—more colors and shades are neatly matched and more small details are available for the viewer. Lubok is a Russian word for popular prints created from woodcuts, engravings, etchings, or later, by using lithography. The prints were often characterized by simple, colorful graphics depicting a narrative, and could also include text. During World War I, lubok informed Russians about events on the frontlines, bolstered morale, and served as propaganda against enemy combatants.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

I. M. Mashistov Prinitng and Lithography Partnership, Moscow


Title in Original Language

Схватка нашего отряда с германцами под Иловым и Ловичем

Type of Item

Last updated: November 14, 2017