National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of Cephalus Punished at the Hunt Bernardino Luini (artist)
Milanese, c. 1480 - 1532
Cephalus Punished at the Hunt, c. 1520/1522
fresco
overall: 211.4 x 110.3 cm (83 1/4 x 43 7/16 in.)
Samuel H. Kress Collection
1943.4.55
Not on View
From the Tour: Fresco Cycle with the Story of Procris and Cephalus
Object 5 of 9

This violent scene of Cephalus using a club to defend himself against dogs occurs in neither the ancient poem nor the Renaissance drama. The goddess Diana, angered at Cephalus’ treatment of his wife, urges her hounds to attack him. Procris, hiding in the bushes, seems astonished at Diana’s vengeance, while the goddess’ nymphs run to join the fray.

Act III of the play, either never included in Luini’s frescoes or destroyed when his paintings were removed from the walls, deals with the couple’s reconciliation. As a sign of their renewed union, Procris gives her husband a magical weapon bestowed upon her by Diana—a spear that never misses its mark.

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