ALFRED RETHEL (1816-1859), German historical painter, was born at Aix-la-Chapelle in 1816.
Four years later he was the successful competitor for the work of ornamenting the restored council house of his native city with frescoes depicting prominent events in the career of Charlemagne, but the execution of this work was delayed for some six years.
Meanwhile Rethel occupied himself with the production of easel pictures and of drawings; and in 1842 he began a striking series of designs dealing with the "Crossing of the Alps by Hannibal," in which the weird power which animates his later art becomes first apparent.
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