Bacchus and Ariadne, early 18th Century mythological tapestry
Flemish, early 18th Century
Width 428cm, depth 276cm, height 2cm
The tapestry is rectangular and is woven within a four-sided narrow golden frame pattern border. It depicts the god Bacchus (Dionysus) being pulled on his chariot by two cheetahs, surrounded by his followers. The story of Bacchus and Ariadne comes from the poems of Catullus and Ovid: in it, Ariadne has been abandoned on the island of Naxos by her lover Theseus. While she is alone on the island, the god Bacchus falls in love with her and turns her into the Northern Crown constellation (Corona Borealis). The story is the subject of a famous painting by Titian (1522-1523).