Tag Archives: 1540s

The Lord cut off Holofernes’ head…

Holoferni Caput Dominus Abstulit per Manum Judith

…through the hand of Judith, the Latin inscription on this 1547 engraving by Hans Sebald Beham reads.


Female Mask…

…by Leonard Thiry (fl. 1536-1550 at Fontainebleau).

Benvenuto Cellini: Juno

Benvenuto Cellini was neither a painter nor a draughtsman—he held painting in low regard—but a few sketches for sculptures and metalwork have survived. About this Juno, we read in his autobiography:

On the day following I went to thank the King, who ordered me to make the models of twelve silver statues, which were to stand as candelabra round his table. He wanted them to represent six gods and six goddesses, and to have exactly the same height as his Majesty, which was a trifle under four cubits. […] I began, in God’s name, to work, and fashioned four little waxen models, about two-thirds of a cubit each in height. They were Jupiter, Juno, Apollo, and Vulcan.

The King is Francis I of France, the year is 1540. It seems that only the Jupiter was executed in silver, and no-one knows what became of it. This black chalk sketch of Juno is all that’s left of the candelabra.