You are here
Home > Do You Know > PASSIONATE PAINTINGS – Death of Orpheus

PASSIONATE PAINTINGS – Death of Orpheus

Death of Orpheus

After the sad demise of Eurydice, his beloved, Orpheus became completely shattered and desolate. Nothing could bring solace to his tormented soul. He played extremely sad songs to the pleasure of the rocks and the rivers and the trees. His only comfort was to lay on a huge rock and look at the blue sky. He repulsed the romantic advances of the Thracian women and stopped to worship any god, except Apollo.

Luca Giordano [Italy 1634-1705]
Luca Giordano [Italy 1634-1705]
Gregorio Lazzarin [Italy 1657-1730] - Orpheus and the Bacchantes
Gregorio Lazzarin [Italy 1657-1730] – Orpheus and the Bacchantes
Emile Jean-Baptiste Phillipe Bin - [France 1825-1897]
Emile Jean-Baptiste Phillipe Bin – [France 1825-1897]
Émile Lévy [France 1826-1890] - The Death of Orpheus
Émile Lévy [France 1826-1890] – The Death of Orpheus

Among Orpheus’ rejected lovers were the Maenads, a group of women who used to worship Bacchus. Once those insulted and angry band of unruly women attacked Orpheus under the influence of drinks and started to throw stones at him. However, the missiles refuse to hit Orpheus, as they were enchanted by his music. The women then raised a scream to drown the sound of the music, and this time the missiles reached him and soon were stained with his blood. They killed him, cut his body into pieces and threw them and his lyre into the river Hebrus, down which they floated, murmuring sad music.

Gustave Moreau - [France 1826-1898]
Gustave Moreau – [France 1826-1898]
Henri Leopold Levy - [France 1840-1904]
Henri Leopold Levy – [France 1840-1904]
John William Waterhouse [Italy 1849-1917] - Nymphs Finding the Head of Orpheus
John William Waterhouse [Italy 1849-1917] – Nymphs Finding the Head of Orpheus
Lovis Corinth - [Germay 1858-1925]
Lovis Corinth – [Germay 1858-1925]
Martha Mayer Erlebacher - [USA 1937-2013]
Martha Mayer Erlebacher – [USA 1937-2013]

It is said that his head and his lyre floated down the river to the island of Lesvos, where it was discovered by the Muses. They collected the remains of his body and buried them at Libethra, where a nightingale is said to sing over his grave. His lyre was placed by Jupiter among the stars. His shadow passed a second time to Tartarus, where he found his lady love Eurydice again and embraced her with his eager arms.

Dibyendu Banerjee
Dibyendu Banerjee

Ex student of Scottish Church College. Served a Nationalised Bank for nearly 35 years. Authored novels in Bengali. Translated into Bengali novels/short stories of Leo Tolstoy, Eric Maria Remarque, D.H.Lawrence, Harold Robbins, Guy de Maupassant, Somerset Maugham and others. Also compiled collections of short stories from Africa and Third World. Interested in literature, history, music, sports and international films.

Leave a Reply

Top