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Ulysses and Circe


RCIN 912969

Jan van der Straet travelled as a young man from Flanders to Italy (where he adopted the name Giovanni Stradanus), and spent most of his career in Florence. This is a study for a painting in Francesco de’ Medici’s cabinet room or studiolo in the Palazzo Vecchio. After the Trojan War, Odysseus landed on the island of the sorceress Circe, who turned his companions into animals. Odysseus set out to Circe’s palace to free the men, protected by a herb given to him by Mercury, here at lower left. No. 23

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