00:00
/
00:00
Goltzius, Hendrik
The Emperor Commodus as Hercules, from Three Famous Antique Statues at Rome (also known as Hercules and Telephos)
around 1592, published 1617

Hendrik Goltzius spent between 1592 and 1594 in Rome, where he devoted himself to “industriously copying the most important ancient statues,” in the words of one biographer. He would later translate three of these drawings into exquisite engravings. This statue represents Hercules, the divinity with whom Emperor Commodus (reigned 180–192 CE) associated himself to further legitimize his power. Goltzius may have intended to produce a larger series, as there was a dearth of reliable prints of ancient statuary for artists’ use in the late sixteenth century.

 
Goltzius, Hendrik
Mülbracht (now Bracht-am-Niederrhein), Netherlands 1558–Haarlem, Netherlands 1617
The Emperor Commodus as Hercules, from Three Famous Antique Statues at Rome (also known as Hercules and Telephos)
around 1592, published 1617
Engraving on laid paper
sheet: 43.3 cm x 33.7 cm; plate: 41.5 cm x 30 cm
Gift of Jan Johnson, 2004
47-010

Subscribe to our “This Week at Agnes” e-newsletter to stay abreast of events, news and opportunities at the art museum.