Painted during the Civil Wars between Parliament and Charles I, the portrait shows a young prince as a military hero confident of victory. Charles, Prince of Wales, the eldest son of the king, holds a commander's baton in his right hand and places his other hand on a helmet, held by his page. In the left corner of the picture, the hideous head of Medusa, symbol of strife, stares out, literally petrifying the enemy. In the distant background, a battle rages. The painting probably commemorates Charles's presence at the Battle of Edgehill in 1642.