Kennington served in France and was invalided out of the army in June 1915. He was an official war artist from 1916-19.
This drawing is a study for a lithograph. It was one in a series called Making Soldiers which the Ministry of Information published as part of the war effort in 1917. In practice soldiers charged at straw bags representing enemy soldiers. The act of bayoneting an enemy might perhaps be compared with that of the soldier who pierced Christ’s side when he was on the cross.