Mars, Venus and Cupid with Vulcan at his forge (the Mantuan Roundel)

attributed to Gian Marco Cavalli Italian

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 536

Golden-winged Venus, goddess of love, raptly gazes at Mars, while her husband Vulcan fabricates the war god’s helmet. Standing on her lap, her son Cupid points love’s arrow toward Mars and scowls at Vulcan who has left unfinished the infant god’s small wings, without which he cannot hit his mark. The Latin inscription admonishes them: Venus Mars and Love rejoice. Vulcan, you labor! This magnificent bronze relief, attributed to the goldsmith-sculptor Gian Marco Cavalli, was produced within the refined culture of the Northern Italian Gonzaga court in Mantua, in which such antiquarian inventions were highly prized.

Mars, Venus and Cupid with Vulcan at his forge (the Mantuan Roundel), attributed to Gian Marco Cavalli (Italian, ca. 1454–after 1508, activity documented 1475–1508), Parcel-gilt bronze with silver inlay, integrally cast gilt frame with suspension loop., Italian, Mantua

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.