Vengeance is Sworn



by Francesco Hayez, 1851




Francesco Hayez painted the striking picture of 1851, “Vengeance is Sworn”. The composition is dominated by the two almost life-size figures at its centre, their detailed treatment set off by the very summary background with its suggestion of Venetian palaces and a fountain. Hayez, too, was a master of the rendering of the distinct qualities of diverse types of cloth, from the flowered pattern of the dress, by way of the gleam of the silk, to the transparency of the veil. Hayez was intimately connected with the Viennese art world of this period. He had arrived in Vienna in 1836 in order to contribute to the process of reform then underway at the Academy of Fine Arts, and he was presented to the Emperor by Prince Metternich. Viennese painters of this period were also attentive to developments elsewhere in Europe and awareness of what was being painted in England, in France, and in Italy ensured a certain openness that was to find its reflection in the work produced in Vienna. It is by reference to the art produced at this period in these other countries that we are able to make meaningful comparisons. Such broad reference supplies us with the criteria that allow us to recognise the significance and the quality of the painting of the Biedermeier Era in Vienna, even by the standards established by this international context.

The Shepards Dream

The Shepherd's Dream, from 'Paradise Lost' 1793 by Henry Fuseli 1741-1825


from ‘Paradise Lost’ by Henry Fuseli   1793

‘Whose midnight revels by a forest side
Or fountain some belated peasant sees,
Or dreams he sees, while over head the moon
Sits arbitress, and nearer to the earth
Wheels her pale course, they on their mirth and dance
Intent, with jocund music charm his ear;
At once with joy and fear his heart rebounds.’

Goddess Kannon appearing before prince Shotoku


by Utagawa Kunisada (1786-1864)
Series  Tales of the wonders of the goddess Kannon. 1859

Prince Shōtoku (聖徳太子 Shōtoku Taishi, February 7, 572 – April 8, 622), also known as Prince Umayado (厩戸皇子Umayado no ōji) or Prince Kamitsumiya (上宮皇子Kamitsumiya no ōji), was a semi-legendary regent and a politician of the Asuka period in Japan who served under Empress Suiko. He was the son of Emperor Yōmei and his consort, Princess Anahobe no Hashihito, who was also Yōmei’s younger half-sister. His parents were relatives of the ruling Soga clan and he was involved in the defeat of the rival Mononobe clan. The primary source of the life and accomplishments of Prince Shōtoku comes from the Nihon Shoki

© via wikipedia