The Worship of Venus


Artist: Titian

Year: c. 1520

The Worship of Venus is an oil painting by the Italian artist Titian; and is believed to be executed between 1518 and 1520. It depicts a Roman ceremony of worship performed in respect of the goddess Venus. In this ceremony, it is believed to be the women would clean themselves and all the blemishes on their bodies by making offerings to representations of the goddess.

In the painting the two nymphs, right in the ceremony, have attended the holy place. They are holding a symbol of Venus and the shrine is encircled by votive tablets. One of the older women right beside the shrine is holding a mirror high and checking on the decorations by using it. The ground is thronged with male infants, or putti, who have seen to be distracted by keeping themselves busy in leaping, flying, climbing trees, fighting, gathering apples, lying around, fondling, and pulling each other’s hair.

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