Francisco de Goya

That's tough! (Fuerte cosa es!)

That's tough! (Fuerte cosa es!)
Datos Generales
Ca. 1812 - 1815
155 x 208 mm
Técnica y soporte
Etching, burnished aquatint and drypoint
Reconocimiento de la autoría de Goya
Undisputed work
Ficha: realización/revisión
08 Dec 2010 / 28 Oct 2022

32 (on the lower left-hand corner)


See Sad presentiments of what must come to pass (Tristes presentimientos de lo que ha de acontecer).

The number 32 appears on the lower left-hand corner of the third artist's proof.

The title was handwritten on the print by Goya in the first and only series that is known to have been printed at the time the works were created, which the artist gave to his friend Agustín Ceán Bermúdez. Therefore, the title was etched into the plate at a later date and left unchanged as of the first edition of the Disasters of War printed by the San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Madrid in 1863, after the printing of the series in the possession of Ceán Bermúdez.

There are no surviving preparatory drawings for this print.

Análisis artístico

In the centre of the composition a French soldier is holding a sword as he gazes fearlessly at the bodies of two hanged men. Behind that soldier is another who is pulling on the leg of one of the bodies.

Although it is not entirely clear what the French soldiers are doing, it seems that the soldier who is pulling on the hanged man's leg is attempting to check whether he is dead or perhaps to hasten the man's death, increasing the cruelty of the act committed and highlighting the cold-bloodedness of the soldiers carrying out the hangings. The Frenchman in the foreground in the centre of the composition is drawing his sword to cut the rope from which the dead man hangs.

Interpreting the two figures on the left in the background is a more difficult task. A soldier holds up a woman who is partially hidden from view, and it is difficult to tell if the soldier is holding her back, preventing a violent reaction or comforting her in her anguish.

Nature has an important role in this work. As in the case of other prints in the series, the setting is arid, jagged, serving as a weapon capable of inflicting pain on the human body. Nothing in the natural world presented in this work suggests that it is a source of life.

This print is characterized by a somewhat more hasty technique than others in the series, rendered in quicker, more immediate lines. The artist is less precise here than in the case of other prints in The Disasters of War, employing fewer marks to convey figures which are less well characterized.


The plate is stored in the National Chalcography (cat. 282).

  • Goya and his times
    The Royal Academy of Arts
    cat. 66
  • De grafiek van Goya
    Rijksmuseum Rijksprentenkabinet
    from November 13th 1970 to January 17th 1971
  • Francisco de Goya: Maleri, Tegning, Grafikk
    from 10th to April 14th 1996
  • Francisco de Goya
    Museo d'Arte Moderna
    exhibition celebrated from September 22nd to November 17th.
  • Francisco Goya. Sein leben im spiegel der graphik. Fuendetodos 1746-1828 Bordeaux. 1746-1996
    Galerie Kornfeld
    from November 21st 1996 to January 1997
  • Francisco Goya. Capricci, follie e disastri della guerra
    San Donato Milanese
    Opere grafiche della Fondazione Antonio Mazzotta
  • Goya. Opera grafica
    Pinacoteca del Castello di San Giorgio
    exhibition celebrated from December 16th 2006 to April 1st 2007
  • Goya et la modernité
    Pinacothèque de Paris
    from October 11st 2013 to March 16th 2014
  • BERUETE Y MONET, Aureliano de
    Goya, grabador
    MadridBlass S.A.
    cat. 133
  • HARRIS, Tomás
    Goya engravings and lithographs, vol. I y II.
    Oxford, Bruno Cassirer
    cat. 151
  • GASSIER, Pierre y WILSON, Juliet
    Vie et ouvre de Francisco de Goya
    ParísOffice du livre
    cat. 1046
  • SANTIAGO, Elena M. (coordinadora)
    Catálogo de las estampas de Goya en la Biblioteca Nacional
    MadridMinisterio de Educación y Cultura, Biblioteca Nacional
    cat. 235
  • OROPESA, Marisa and RINCÓN GARCÍA, Wilfredo
    ParísPinacoteca de París
    p. 135
    Goya. In the Norton Simon Museum
    PasadenaNorton Simon Museum
    pp. 114-151
Enlaces externos
Usamos cookies propias y de terceros para mejorar su navegación. Si continua navegando consideramos que acepta el uso de cookies.