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PHILIP RUNDELL (1746-1827)

The Shield of Achilles


RCIN 51266

In the Iliad Homer describes a shield forged for Achilles by the god Hephaestus, said to represent the worlds of gods and men. Flaxman’s shield, a recreation of Homer’s words, shows the heavens in the centre – with the sun god Apollo in his chariot surrounded by the moon and stars. The border shows scenes of earthly life, and the rim the ‘mighty stream of ocean’.

Purchased by George IV in 1821

    The income from your ticket contributes directly to The Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity. The aims of The Royal Collection Trust are the care and conservation of the Royal Collection, and the promotion of access and enjoyment through exhibitions, publications, loans and educational activities.