Landscape with Juno and Callisto
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Landscape with Juno and Callisto about 1540
This drawing illustrates an episode in the life of Callisto from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Callisto was one of the goddess Diana’s chaste and beautiful maidens. She was seduced by Jupiter, who had disguised himself as Diana in order to become close to Callisto. When the resulting pregnancy was discovered by Diana, Callisto was banished from her group, and having given birth to her son Arcas, she was punished again by Jupiter’s jealous wife Juno, who transformed her into a bear. This drawing shows the moment when Juno catches Callisto’s hair; her subsequent transformation into a bear begins with her arms growing hair. Jupiter eventually turned Callisto into the constellation of Ursa Major, the Great Bear.

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Ovid's Metamorphoses

A poem in fifteen books by the Roman poet, Ovid, which tells the story of the creation and history of the world according to Greek and Roman mythology.

Ovid's Metamorphoses

Details

  • Acc. No. D 4911
  • Medium Pen and brown ink on paper
  • Size 35.70 x 48.90 cm
  • Credit Purchased 1966