Marini produced his first equestrian works in the mid 1930s. He was inspired to do so by seeing sculptures of medieval knights on horseback in Germany. The subject symbolised for him a primeval or mythical harmony between man and nature. After the Second World War, however, his figures on horses often expressed anguish. This related to Marini's experience of seeing Italian peasants on frightened horses fleeing bombardment during the War. The artist wrote that this sculpture was 'the result of a sad period which Italy passed through during the War', and described it as 'enclosed in geometrical lines', and 'very precise in its tragic and human significance'.