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Oil Painting - Orpheus Returning from the Underworld

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Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery

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Basic Information

Accession Number:1960P60
Collection:Fine Art Paintings and Sculpture
Date:1580 - 1630

Maker Information

Attributed to:Tobias Verhaecht - View biography for Tobias Verhaecht


In Greek mythology, Orpheus was a musician. When his wife Eurydice died, Orpheus went to the Underworld to bring her back. Hades, the ruler of the Underworld, initially refused to allow Eurydice to return, but Orpheus' lyre playing was so beautiful that he relented on the condition that on the journey back, Orpheus did not look behind him. At the last moment, Orpheus glanced back to catch a glimpse of his wife, and here we see her being snatched back into the Underworld.

Bequeathed by Charles Woolley, 1960.

Further Information

Production Period:16th Century
School/Style:Old Master
Medium:Oil on wood panel.


Height:320 mm
Width:450 mm