Final two stories, of a brother and sister caught in an incestuous relationship, and one of the many widowed Greeks from the Trojan war. Very different paintings hidden away.
Ovid’s fictional letter made it clear how the legend of Phaon was absurd. Yet it has been painted repeatedly ever since.
Was she abducted, seduced, or seducer? Victim or whore? Ovid’s pair of letters between Helen and Paris raises questions which many artists have tried to tackle.
Boy meets girl but has to swim a mile in treacherous waters to keep meeting her. When she tells him how she burns with passion, he pushes his luck in the sea.
She saves Theseus’ life by her ingenuity, which wins her marriage to him. But at the first opportunity he abandons her and sails away.
Girl meets boy on a mission; boy cannot deviate from mission; boy leaves girl; girl heartbroken. But was this relationship doomed from the start by others?
The tragic story of Jason’s first wife, whom he abandoned in favour of Medea, the sorceress. In the end, Hypsipyle got her revenge on him.
Princess, sorceress, seductress, wife, mother, and vengeful filicide – one of the most complex characters to paint. Known from her letter in Heroides, and a lost work by Ovid.
Dragged to a dungeon by her hair, she had committed no crime – indeed, she had only been faithful to her husband.
An illustrated index to the articles in this series, with an introduction, and extensive references and links.