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Thetis Dipping the Infant Achilles into the River Styx

Thetis Dipping the Infant Achilles into the River Styx

Peter Paul Rubens (in 1630 - 1635)

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  • lewis ashe asked

    Where is this art piece located now?

  • Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen answered

    Hi Lewis, This work is now on view in room 13 of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam! Best, Rianne

  • tristion asked

    what era was this made

  • Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen answered

    Hi Tristion, this was made between 1630 and 1635. kind regards, Sophie

  • Jeff asked

    The Ringling museum seems to have a similar painting; what is the difference between this version and theirs: http://emuseum.ringling.org/emuseum/objects/22610/achilles-dipped-into-the-river-styx?ctx=c6cd4de8-23d2-4805-b84a-cd765d5bb906&idx=0

  • Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen answered

    Dear Jeff, the work at the Ringling Museum is the larger 'modello' of this first sketch that Rubens made for a series of tapestries. The modello in turn is the basis for the full scale 'cartoons' which were used during the actual production of the final tapestries. All the best, Rianne

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More information

Rubens here depicts the scene in which the sea nymph Thetis dips her son Achilles in the Styx, the river of the underworld. In this way, Thetis wanted to make her son immortal, after an oracle had told her that he would die young in battle. While she dipped him in the water, she held on to him by his foot. Because of this, this area, the proverbial Achilles heel, proved his vulnerable spot. He would ultimately be killed by a poisoned arrow entering his heel. This painting is the first in a series of eight oil sketches which Rubens made in preparation for a series of tapestries

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Specifications

Title Thetis Dipping the Infant Achilles into the River Styx
Material and technique Oil on panel
Object type
Painting > Painting > Two-dimensional object > Art object
Location This object is in storage
Dimensions Width 38.4 cm
Height 44.1 cm
Artists Schilder: Peter Paul Rubens
Accession number 1760 (OK)
Credits Schenking / Donation: D.G. van Beuningen 1933
Department Old Masters
Acquisition date 1933
Age artist Between 53 and 58 years old
Collector Collector / D.G. van Beuningen
Exhibitions Schilderkunst uit de eerste hand, Olieverfschetsen van Tintoretto tot Goya (1983)
Petrus Paulus Rubens in het Museum Boijmans (1933)
The Collection Enriched (2011)
De collectie als tijdmachine (2017)
External exhibitions Rubens. Painter of Sketches (2018)
Material
Object
Geographical origin Southern Netherlands > The Netherlands > Western Europe > Europe

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All about the artist

Peter Paul Rubens

Siegen 1577 - Antwerpen 1640

The Antwerp painter Peter Paul Rubens was appointed court artist to the Duke of Mantua in Italy at a young age. In 1603 he travelled to Madrid, where he was...

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