Artemisia Gentileschi (1593-1653)

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Procne and Philomela Showing Tereus the Head of his Son Itys, nd

Background: Procne and Philomena are sisters, and Tereus is Procne’s husband. Tereus kidnapped Philomena, took her to a cabin where he raped her, cut out her tongue, and raped her again. Leaving her there, he returned to Procne and told her Philomena was dead. Philomena was able to weave her story into cloth and have it delivered to her sister.

Procne managed to find Philomena and rescued her. The plan for revenge was to mutilate Tereus, but Procne decided it would be more effective to use their son, Itys, to obtain revenge. The sisters killed the boy, cooked him, and served him to his father.

Artemisia Gentileschi (1593-1653)

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Judith Slaying Holofernes, 1614-1620