Understanding Paintings: Bible Stories and Classical Myths in Art

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Thames & Hudson, 2009 - Art criticism - 359 pages
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For centuries, Bible stories and ancient Greek and Roman mythology were the main subjects of Western art. Old Masters such as Titian, Rubens, Rembrandt and countless others rendered these stirring, poignant, bloodthirsty and often erotic tales on panel or canvas, in the process creating a familiar way of visualizing our collective imagination. Here, Patrick de Rynck examines over 200 of these works. The result is a book that explores the roots of Western civilization from three different angles: it introduces or re-introduces the reader to the best-known stories from the Bible and mythology; it presents a selection of exquisite masterpieces by some of the worlds greatest painters; and it shows the reader how those painters interpreted these famous scenes.

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Achilles 22 Adam and Eve 24 Anna and Joachim 34
Apollo 38 Arachne 44 Babel 46 Bacchus and Ariadne 48
Belshazzar 52 Cambyses 54 Cephalus and Procris 56 Ceres 60

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About the author (2009)

Patrick De Rynck is a classicist, a translator, and a writer for museums, publishers, newspapers, and radio. He is the author of ten books, including an ABC of Classical literature and a retelling of Greek myths.

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