The Abduction of Europa by Rembrandt van Rijn

The Abduction of Europa

(Die Entführung der Europa)


Rembrandt van Rijn

The Abduction of Europa by Rembrandt van Rijn
1632  ·  Oil on panel  ·  702.39 Megapixel  ·  Picture ID:19881
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The Greek godfather Zeus is notorious for his numerous affair with mortals. In order to avoid his jealous wife, Hera, Zeus usually approached the women of his desire in animal form: in the case of the Phoenician princess Europe as a white bull. He first played with Europa and her girlfriends before Europe sat on the back of the bull, which then immediately disappeared with her into the waters of the Mediterranean. According to legend, the continent to which Zeus brought Europe has since been named. The connection between the godfather and Europe sprang from three sons who were adopted by Europe's later husband Asterios, King Cretas: Minos, Rhadamanthys and Sarpedon. In the painting, however, Europe and her companions are depicted not as women of Greek antiquity, but according to the ideal of beauty of the Baroque (plentiful wealth) and pale and wearing contemporary clothes. © Meisterdrucke


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