Results 1 1137
1033 Previous Next

The Suicide of Lucretia
Explore Object
Creative Commons License

The Suicide of Lucretia


Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Inscription Credit
Description The suicide of the Roman heroine Lucretia was related by the historian Livy (59 BC-AD 17). Raped by an Etruscan prince, she extracted an oath of vengeance from her father and husband and then stabbed herself. As a result, the Etruscan kings were expelled and the Roman Republic was established (late 6th century BCE). At the time, her response to being raped- suicide- was considered appropriate, even noble. By the 1500s, Lucretia was depicted as a beautiful woman whose rich garments are pulled open and who plunges a dagger into her breast. This dagger is inscribed with the mark of the Nuremberg artist, Heinrich Ulrich, who is known primarily as an engraver. The colors, mannerist figure type, and erotic overtones suggest the influence of German painters such as Hans von Aachen at the Habsburg court in Prague around 1600 but Ulrich, if he is the painter, could have encountered their paintings elsewhere. Initials previously described as reading CSB (?) intertwined with the reference to Livy on the bottom of the column (and visible in old photographs) now appear to have existed only in a later glaze. With that glaze removed, there is no longer evidence for them; thus the puzzle of the unidentified "Master CSB" can be put to rest.
Conservation
Date Description Narrative
5/10/1948Treatmentcleaned; repaired; loss compensation; coated
5/10/1948Treatmentcoated; filled; inpainted; reconstructed; varnish removed or reduced
5/13/1952Treatmentcleaned
Exhibitions
  • World of Wonder. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1971-1972.
Provenance Don Marcello Massarenti Collection, Rome; purchased by Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1902; by bequest to Walters Art Museum, 1931.
Inscriptions [Monogram] On knife: HV with a crown (?); [Inscription] At right: TITUS LIVIUS lib 1/ 1600
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters with the Massarenti Collection, 1902

Download Image Add to Collection Creative Commons License

Period
1600 (Late Renaissance)
Medium
oil on panel
(Painting & Drawing)
Accession Number
37.339
Measurements
H: 26 x W: 21 in. (66 x 53.3 cm)
Geographies

Tags


    Thumbnail: The Suicide of Lucretia
    Zoom Out Zoom In Back to Details  
    Full Size: The Suicide of Lucretia