Unknown artist and Raphael, The Triumph of Galatea

The Triumph of Galatea, ?early 19th century

Unknown artist and After Raphael (1483 - 1520)

RA Collection: Art

This painting is a reduced copy after Raphael's fresco The Triumph of Galatea executed in 1511 for Agostino Chigi's villa, now Villa Farnesina in Rome.

The painting relates to the story of the nymph Galatea which Ovid had borrowed from the Sicilian poet Theocritus and narrated in his Metamorphoses (13:750-768). Galatea was in love with the young Acis but the Cyclop Polyphemus (depicted in the adjacent lunette by Sebastiano del Piombo), jealous of the youth, killed Acis by throwing at him a piece of rock. The blood flowing from beneath the rock turned rapidly into a clear stream ending into the sea, the realm of Galatea. The river Acis still runs nowadays near the volcanic mountain of Aetna.

Galatea appears standing on a giant seashell led by two dolphins, surrounded by a company of nymphs and tritons while three putti in the air are drawing their bows.

Object details

The Triumph of Galatea
Unknown artist and After Raphael (1483 - 1520)
?early 19th century
Object type
Oil on canvas

1390 mm x 1010 mm

Royal Academy of Arts
Object number
Purchased from Francis Stephen Cary in 1874

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