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For artists in the eighteenth century the story of Cupid and Psyche symbolised the union of physical love (Cupid) with the soul (Psyche). Here Psyche is shown in sorrow at Cupid's desertion. As the 1857 Patureau sale catalogue put it, the ‘victim...sadly inclines her head ... with all the signs of silent sorrow’. The composition, originally with a pendant depicting Amour (Cupid), was painted for an unidentified amateur with the initials M.
oil on mahogany panel
44.4 x 37.8 cm
acquired by Richard Seymour-Conway, 4th Marquess of Hertford, 1857; bequeathed to the nation by Lady Wallace, 1897
The Wallace Collection
Hertford House Manchester Square, London, Greater London W1U 3BN EnglandView venue
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