Rembrandt rendered the ancient goddess of the hunt, Diana, in a vulnerable, un-classical way. Certainly the etcher’s close observation of Diana’s delicately sagging, wrinkled flesh does not conform to the traditional idealization of the classical nude. With her quiver emerging from beneath a glossy decorated pelt and her legs partly immersed in a pond, Diana turns to behold the viewer with a small, reserved smile.
According to the ancient Roman poet Ovid, who recounted the myth in his Metamorphoses, Diana was observed bathing nude by the hunter Actaeon, and in her rage at the visual violation, she transformed him into a deer whose hounds pursued and killed him.
baths; water; figures; nudes; female
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