Ceres and Phytalus

A work made of etching with drypoint in black on ivory laid paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of etching with drypoint in black on ivory laid paper.

Date:

c. 1662

Artist:

Salvator Rosa
Italian, 1615-1673

About this artwork

Salvator Rosa produced 17 large etchings in the early 1660s, frequently adopting mythological lore peppered with classical literature. Ceres and Phytalus deliciously celebrates the fig, of which Rosa was particularly fond. Phytalus, a king of Attica, is said to have given the goddess Ceres shelter on her journey to find her daughter Proserpina, whom Pluto had abducted into the underworld. Rosa’s inscription reads, “Here the hero Phytalus had received Ceres into his house, on whom she first bestowed the seeds of the sacred fruit which mortals call the FIG.” This honeyed crop subsequently became a staple of Mediterranean cuisine.

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Prints and Drawings

Artist

Salvator Rosa

Title

Ceres and Phytalus

Origin

Italy

Date

1657–1667

Medium

Etching with drypoint in black on ivory laid paper

Dimensions

352 x 236 mm (image/plate); 464 x 336 mm (sheet)

Credit Line

Gift of Pia Gallo in honor of Martha Tedeschi

Reference Number

2012.923

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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