1495: Relationship Issues

PieroPiero di Cosimo: A Satyr Mourning over a Nymph [The Death of Procris] (c. 1495) (source)

In one version of the myth of Procris, her husband Cephalus abandons her for eight years to test her fidelity, and then, when he returns, seduces her while in disguise. Later, after they patch things up, Procris thinks Cephalus must have a lover, because he is always out “hunting”— and one of her servants reports overhearing him calling out to someone named “Nephele” in the woods, when really he was just calling out to a goddess for a cool breeze. The next time he goes hunting, Procris follows him and leaps out of hiding when she hears him call out to Nephele again. Startled, he shoots her with an arrow, and she falls dead.

The dog to the right is Laelaps, the mythological dog who never fails to catch her prey. At some point, Cephalus takes her out to hunt the Teumessian fox, a fox that can never be caught. A paradoxical chase ensues until Zeus has enough of it and turns them into constellations (Canis Major and Canis Minor).

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s