02 Works – Louis-François Cassas’ visit to Lebanon, with footnotes

Louis-François Cassas (Azay-le-Ferron 1756-1827 Versailles)
The remains of the Temple of Jupiter and the Great Court at Baalbek, Lebanon

Pen, ink and watercolour on laid paper
61.6 x 93.3cm (24 1/4 x 36 3/4in)
Private collection

The Temple of Jupiter is a colossal Roman temple, the largest of the Roman world, situated at the Baalbek complex in Heliopolis Syriaca (modern Lebanon). The temple served as an oracle and was dedicated to Jupiter Heliopolitanus.

It is not known who commissioned or designed the temple, nor exactly when it was constructed. Work probably began around 16 BC and was nearly complete by about AD 60. It is situated at the western end of the Great Court of Roman Heliopolis, on a broad platform of stone raised another 7 m (23 ft) above the huge stones of the foundation, three of which are among the heaviest blocks ever used in a construction. Cultic activity had long taken place at the site; the temple presumably replaced an earlier one, possibly using the same foundation.

It was the biggest temple dedicated to Jupiter in all the Roman Empire. The columns were 19.9 meters high with a diameter of nearly 2.5 meters: the biggest in the classical world. It took three centuries to create this colossal temple complex. More on the Temple of Jupiter

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17 Works, November 7th. is Paul Baudry’s day, his art, illustrated with footnotes #231

Baudry, Paul (La Roche-sur-Yon, 07–11–1828 – Paris, 17–01–1886)
Jupiter et les Corybantes, c. 1876

Ceiling mural Opera National, Paris

In Greek and Roman mythology, the god Saturn was warned that one of his offspring would overthrow him, so he ate his children at birth. To protect their son, his wife Ops took the infant Jupiter to the island of Crete to be raised by the Corybantes, who used the rhythm of their dancing and the clashing of their cymbals to disguise the baby’s cries so he would not be discovered by Saturn.

Paul-Jacques-Aimé Baudry (7 November 1828–17 January 1886) was a French painter…

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21 Works, September 26th. is Théodore Géricault’s day, his story, illustrated with footnotes #211

Théodore Géricault (1791–1824)
Riderless Horse Race, c. 1817

Oil on canvas
Height: 45 cm (17.7 in); Width: 60 cm (23.6 in)
Louvre Museum

The Race of the Riderless Horses is based on a genuine event that Gericault witnessed, in which riderless Barbary horses were encouraged to race each other down the Via del Corso (corso meaning race). Barbary horses were feisty and spirited animals and the riderless beasts galloping down the street would be unbroken and sometimes entirely unused to the presence of people. Carnival in Rome would end with the racing, but after an unwary spectator was trampled and killed in 1874 the practise stopped and the carnival itself went into decline (until recently, Carnival was resurrected in 2008!). However, while the practice was still in its heyday, the horse-loving Gericault saw the spectacle and was awed by the demonstration of power and might as the horses surged past, fighting for supremacy. More on this painting

Jean-Louis André Théodore Géricault (26 September 1791–26 January 1824) was a French painter and lithographer, whose best-known painting is The Raft of the Medusa (See below). Although he died young, he was one of the pioneers of the Romantic movement…

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