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Gum tempera, ink, and gold on paper
Painting only: 12.6 x 10.4 cm (4 15/16 x 4 1/8 in.); Overall: 20 x 13.6 cm (7 7/8 x 5 3/8 in.)
Gift of Mrs. A. Dean Perry 1962.279.29.a
The cellar is represented in cross-section to reveal the scene inside.
This story is about how wives who wish to be faithful will remain so, despite any seduction. This woman’s husband was a soldier, and when he was away on duty for months at a time, his master, the king, was intrigued at his wife’s faithfulness, proven by a magical rose garland that remained eternally fresh. The king wished to test her by sending his two handsome cooks to visit her and attempt to lure her into adultery. She tricked them into coming to her home and getting on a bed made of weak strings, positioned over a pit into which they fell. She kept them prisoner there until the king and her husband came to see what happened.
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