Penelope — Maquette for the Marmor Homericum by Baron Henri de Triqueti (1803-74). 1861. Plaster. Photograph and text by Jacqueline Banerjee, 2009/10. [Photograph taken by kind permission of the Musée Girodet, Montargis.]
This is the maquette for the roundel in the bottom right-hand corner of the Marmor Homericum, still on display at University College, London. Mythological subjects were as warmly alive to Triqueti as Biblical ones. This one shows a scene from the Odyssey, with Penelope at her loom. She staved off her wooers by saying that she was weaving her father-in-law's shroud, while unravelling her work at the end of each day. She looks round guiltily here, as if fearing to be caught in the act. Triqueti liked to select moments of heightened feeling like this.
Factual information taken from the museum's information plaque.
Last modified 9 May 2010