Return of Judith to Bethulia
by Sandro Botticelli, c. 1470, is a tempera painting of a story from the Bible’s Book of Judith. Holofernes, a general of the king Nebuchadnezzar, besieged the lands of the coast and the city of Bethulia fell under attack. The beautiful widow Judith traveled to visit Holofernes in his tent, where she seduced and beheaded him, handing victory to her people. Here Botticelli depicts the heroine with her sword in hand traveling across the landscape with soldiers and horses in the distance. Her servant carries the head of the slain general. Judith was a popular subject in the Renaissance for the contrast between her elegant beauty and the gruesomeness of her act.
Sandro Botticelli (1445-1510) was a Florentine painter of the of the early Italian Renaissance who apprenticed under the master Filippo Lippi. With strong Gothic influences, the mature work of Botticelli reflected a study of antique classical sculpture and was noted for its linear grace and rhythm, flattened relief-like forms with strong contours, and subtle coloring. The complexity of meanings in Botticelli’s compositions, from sources drawn from classical antiquity, mythology and philosophy, enthralled scholars for centuries.
creates art poster prints, greeting cards, home items, phone cases, and gifts from the works of Italian Renaissance artist Sandro Botticelli
, featuring the classic Renaissance masterpiece Return of Judith to Bethulia