Sappho and Alcaeus (Painting)

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Jan van der Crabben
by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema
published on 26 April 2023
Sappho and Alcaeus (Painting) Download Full Size Image

Sappho and Alcaeus, oil on panel by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, 1881. The painting illustrates a passage by the ancient Greek poet Hermesianax (active c. 330 BCE) depicting a scene on the island of Lesbos (Mytilene) during the late 7th century BCE, where Sappho and her companions are enraptured by the performance of the poet Alcaeus playing a kithara. Alma-Tadema made an effort to maintain authenticity by replicating the marble seating of the Theater of Dionysos in Athens. Nevertheless, he replaced the names of the officials incised on the Athenian prototype with those of members of Sappho's sorority.

The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore.

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Cite This Work

APA Style

Alma-Tadema, S. L. (2023, April 26). Sappho and Alcaeus (Painting). World History Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Chicago Style

Alma-Tadema, Sir Lawrence. "Sappho and Alcaeus (Painting)." World History Encyclopedia. Last modified April 26, 2023.

MLA Style

Alma-Tadema, Sir Lawrence. "Sappho and Alcaeus (Painting)." World History Encyclopedia. World History Encyclopedia, 26 Apr 2023. Web. 19 Jul 2024.