The Rape of Deianara, by Sebastiano Ricci (1659-1743).

Oil on canvas, 116cm by 164.5cm.

In myth, the centaur Nessus attempted to abduct Deianara, the wife of Hercules, after he had carried her across the river Evenus.

Ricci trained in Venice and worked in Turin, Rome, Milan and Florence, where his fresco cycles are thought to be his finest work, before a period in both London and Paris.

This painting is one of many canvases produced by the artist whilst working for Lord Burlington in London in the early 1710s and is thought to have been purchased by Brownlow, 9th Earl of Exeter (1725-1793).


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