Jun 16, 2006

Coat of Arms with a Skull

Coat of Arms with a Skull


Albrecht Dürer

(German, 1471-1528)


Support: Cream(3) laid paper

Sheet: 22.2 x 15.9 cm (8 3/4 x 6 1/4 in.)

John L. Severance Fund 1953.9

Catalogue raisonné: Meder 1932, 98



In this visual allegory, Dürer creatively entangled themes of love and death. The hairy wild man, a traditional medieval figure of virility, lust, and aggression, plays the role of lover to a maiden dressed in alluring clothing. The skull on the fanciful coat of arms is a bold reminder that vanity and illicit desire carry a mortal price.

See also
PR - Engraving
Type of artwork: 

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