Wall painting: Polyphemus and Galatea in a landscape, from the imperial villa at Boscotrecase

Period: Early Imperial, Augustan

Date: last decade of the 1st century B.C.

Culture: Roman

Medium: Fresco

Dimensions: H. 73 3/4 in. (187.33 cm.)
width 47 in. (119.38 cm.)

Classification: Miscellaneous-Paintings

Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1920

Accession Number: 20.192.17

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 166
From the villa of Agrippa Postumus at Boscotrecase, the Mythological Room (19)
Landscape with Polyphemus and Galatea


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From an imperial villa in Boscotrecase, near Pompeii (Santini 1905; Alexander 1929).

1903-4, excavated by Ernesto Santini from an imperial villa on his property at Boscotrecase; from 1904, collection of E. Santini; acquired February 3, 1921, purchased from the estate of E. Santini.
Santini, Ernesto. 1905. Fouilles Exécutées á Boscotrecase, Endroit Nommé "Rota. Boscotrecase, Italia: printed privately.

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Richter, Gisela M. A. 1926. "The Classical Collection: Rearrangement and Important Accessions." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 21(4), part 2: p. 11.

Lehmann-Hartleben, Karl. 1926. "Archäologische Funde in den Jahren 1921-1924." Archäologischer Anzeiger, 41: cols. 140ff..

Alexander, Christine. 1928–1929. "Wall Paintings of the Third Style from Boscotrease." Metropolitan Museum Studies, 1(2): pp. 180, 182, 184–85, figs. 9–10.

Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1936[1934]. A Guide to the Collections, Part 1: Ancient and Oriental Art, 2nd edn. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Rizzo, Guilio Emanuele. 1936. Monumenti della Pittura Antica Scoperta: Le Pitture della Casa di Livia, Vol. 3, Fasc. 3. no. 5, p. 27, Roma: La Libreria dello Stato.

Dawson, Christopher Mounsey. 1944. Romano-Campanian Mythological Landscape Painting. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.

von Blanckenhagen, Peter Heinrich and Christine Alexander. 1962. "The Paintings from Boscotrecase." Mitteilungen des Deutschen Archaeologischen Instituts, Roemische Abteilung, Suppl. 6:

Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1987. Greece and Rome. p. 106, pl. 77, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Anderson, Maxwell. 1987. "Pompeian Frescos in the Metropolitan Museum of Art." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 45(3): p. 51, fig. 54.

Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC). 1990. Vol. 5: Herakles-Kenchrias. "Galateia," p. 1002, no. 22, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.

Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC). 1992. Vol. 6: Kentauroi-Oiax. "Odysseus," p. 960, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.

Knauer, Elfriede R. 1993. "Roman Wall Paintings from Boscotrease: Three Studies in the Relationship between Writing and Painting." Metropolitan Museum Journal, 28: pp. 28–29, fig. 37.

Howard Kathleen. 1994. Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide: Works of Art Selected by Philippe De Montebello p. 100, figs. 41-2, pl. 16, f, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Carratelli, Giovanni Pugliese and Ranuccio Bianchi Bandinelli. 1994. Enciclopedia dell'Arte Antica, Classica e Orientale: Atlante delle Forme Ceramiche, Suppl. 2, Vol. 1. p. 727, fig. 803, Rome: Instituto della Enciclopedia Italiana.

Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC). 1997. Vol. 8: Thespiades-Zodiacus. "Polyphemos I," p. 1017, no. 55, pl. 673, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.

Picón, Carlos A. 1999. "Pleins feux sur l'art grec et romain." Connaissance des Arts, : no. 566.

Elsner, Jas. 1999. "“The Viewer in the Roman Landscape”." Apollo, 150: p. 15, fig. 3.

Milleker, Elizabeth J. 2000. The Year One: Art of the Ancient World East and West no. 28, pp. 48-9, 205, New York and New Haven: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Richardson, Jr., Lawrence. 2000. A Catalog of Identifiable Figure Painters of Ancient Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Stabiae. p. 3, 36-9, 46, Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins Press.

Bruno, Vincent. 2002. "Color in Hellenistic Painting." Color in Ancient Greece: The Role of Color in Ancient Greek Art and Architecture 700-31 B.C., Michalis A. Tiverios and Despoina S. Tsiafakis, eds. pp. 216-7, fig. 6, Thessaloniki: Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

Picón, Carlos A. 2007. Art of the Classical World in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Greece, Cyprus, Etruria, Rome. no. 402, pp. 346-47, 485, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Zanker, Paul. 2010. Roman Art. pp. 129, 131, fig, 79, Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum.

Coleman, Kathleen M. 2015. "Approaching the Visual in Ancient Culture: Principles." Images for Classicists, Loeb Classical Monographs, vol. 15, Kathleen M. Coleman, ed. pp. 4–5, fig. 1.3, Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press.

Galitz, Kathryn. 2016. The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Masterpiece Paintings. no. 29, p. 35, New York: Skira.

Plantzos, Dimitris. 2018. The Art of Painting in Ancient Greece. pp. 324–25, p. 314, Atlanta: Lockwood Press.

Frescoes (129)
Paintings (13,286)
Roman Empire (5,630)