Description Very little is known about Francesco Bertos, a highly original artist who created a considerable number of complicated pyramidal groups in a very distinctive, ingenious style that mirrors the lightness and airiness of contemporary rococo painting in France. These four groups (Walters 54.659, 54.657, 54.660, and 54.658) are allegories (symbolic representations) of the four continents, of which the world was then thought to consist. All have their names engraved. In the allegory of Europe, Jupiter, the king of the gods in Greco-Roman mythology, crowns Bellona, the goddess of war. Jupiter's eagle rest on objects used in war: canon, shield, and drum. Europe is thereby represented as being the leader of the world through her military prowess. The figure of Religion on the ground reveals that the Christian faith is the source of Europe's superior position.
|7/15/1974||Treatment||cleaned; examined for condition|
- The Allure of Bronze. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1995.
Provenance Spiradon, Paris [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Jacques Seligmann & Co., Inc. Sale, New York, February 17, 1917; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1917, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters, 1917
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