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Painting Cave Canem

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Painting Cave Canem

Postby tsnow » Fri Nov 21, 2003 9:32 am

A picture (Vaseul, Musee Garret) by the 19th-century French history painter Jean-Leon Gerome shows a man chained to a wall with the label Cave Canem attached to it. Figures in Roman costume in the background. Who is this? Where is the story?
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Postby Emma_85 » Fri Nov 21, 2003 5:29 pm

I'm afraid a don't know, but a link to the painting may help others here: http://www.kingsgalleries.com/1024x768/ ... ure-59.htm
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Postby benissimus » Fri Nov 21, 2003 11:24 pm

Are you sure it's a story or is it just art? I would guess he is making a statement that the man is the dog, but it could very well be something from literature.
flebile nescio quid queritur lyra, flebile lingua murmurat exanimis, respondent flebile ripae
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Painting Cave Canem

Postby tsnow » Sat Nov 22, 2003 9:17 am

Thanks for the hints!
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Postby Emma_85 » Sat Nov 22, 2003 12:28 pm

Hmmm... he's definitely an academic painter, they tended to base their paintings on Latin or Greek mythology, but that's not what this is so really I don't know. Maybe literature, but I think (I don't know that much about art history, though) he did just make it up.
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Postby Skylax » Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:16 pm

Petronius, Satiricon, 29 :
Ad sinistram enim intrantibus non longe ab ostiarii cella canis ingens, catena vinctus, in pariete erat pictus superque quadrata littera scriptum
CAVE CANEM.


"On the left side when you enter the house, not far from porter's lodge, there was a huge chained up dog painted on the wall and above there was an inscription in capital letters reading CAVE CANEM - Beware of the dog !"

Such a chained up dog was represented on a mosaic at the entry of the Casa di P. Paquio Proculo at Pompeii (Insula 9, n° 1), but without inscription.

The moulding of a once real chained up dog that died in the eruption of the Vesuvius can be seen at the Antiquarium of Pompeii.
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Postby Emma_85 » Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:24 pm

So the Romans often chained up dogs outside of their homes?
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Postby Skylax » Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:32 pm

Life was hard at the time. But paintings or mosaics don't shiver the whole night through.
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Painting

Postby tsnow » Sun Nov 23, 2003 8:53 am

All very true, but irrelevant to the painiing/
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