The Death of Sardanapalus
|French: La Mort de Sardanapale|
|Year||1827 and 1844|
|Type||Oil on canvas|
|Dimensions||392 cm × 496 cm (154 in × 195 in) and
73.71 cm × 82.47 cm (29.02 in × 32.47 in)
|Location||Louvre and Philadelphia Museum of Art, Paris and Philadelphia|
The Death of Sardanapalus (La Mort de Sardanapale) is an oil painting on canvas by Eugène Delacroix, dated 1827. It currently hangs in the Musée du Louvre, Paris. A smaller replica, painted by Delacroix in 1844, is now in the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
The painting's most dominant feature is a large divan, with its golden elephants, on which a nude prostrates herself and beseeches the apathetic Sardanapalus for mercy. Sardanapalus (Detail) had ordered his possessions destroyed and concubines murdered before immolating himself, once he learned that he was faced with military defeat.
The Death of Sardanapalus is based on the tale of Sardanapalus, the last king of Assyria, from the historical library of Diodorus Siculus, the ancient Greek historian, and is a work of the era of Romanticism. This painting uses rich, vivid and warm colours, and broad brushstrokes. It was inspired by Lord Byron's play Sardanapalus (1821), and in turn inspired a cantata by Hector Berlioz, Sardanapale (1830), and also Franz Liszt's opera, Sardanapale (1845–52, unfinished).
|Delacroix's The Death of Sardanapalus|
- Media related to The Death of Sardanapalus at Wikimedia Commons
- 'The Death of Sardanapalus' - Analysis and Critical Reception
- Eugène Delacroix (1798-1863): Paintings, Drawings, and Prints from North American Collections, a full text exhibition catalog from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, which discusses The Death of Sardanapalus
- The Destroyed Room, a 1978 photograph by Jeff Wall was inspired by this work (TATE Modern).
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