The Abduction of Hippodamia

French, Fontainebleau or Avon

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 544

In Greek mythology, the Lapiths invited the centaurs to their king’s wedding. The centaurs drank profusely and attempted to abduct the bride, shown here struggling in her tormentors’ arms as the hero Theseus draws his sword. The battle with the centaurs was often represented during the Renaissance as an allegory of civilization’s triumph over barbarism. The composition was based on a 1542 engraving by the Italian printmaker Enea Vico (1523–1567).

The Abduction of Hippodamia, Lead-glazed earthenware, French, Fontainebleau or Avon

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