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Herod, ruler of Galilee, promised his stepdaughter Salome anything she desired if she danced for him; prompted by her mother, she asked for the head of John the Baptist. The story of the beheading, with its mixture of religion, violence and eroticism, had been depicted many times in art, not least by Caravaggio and Rembrandt.
Oil on canvas
H 243.5 x W 318.4 cm
Sir Hugh Lane Bequest, 1917