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Let This Be a Lesson: Lecture 6

Gavin Hamilton, The Death of Lucretia, 1763–67. Oil on canvas. Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection

“To Paint the Way the Spartans Spoke”: Gavin Hamilton’s The Death of Lucretia

Friday, October 25, 2013, 1:30 pm

Hamilton, a gifted Scotsman working in Rome, was an art dealer, excavator, tour guide, and pioneer neoclassical painter. His scene of a virtuous woman and her resolute avengers, taken from Livy’s history of the earliest days of Rome, was a model for later artists in its blunt eloquence.

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Lecture Video

John Walsh presents Let This Be a Lesson: Lecture 6.

Recommended Readings

Gavin Hamilton and the Grand Tour have been the subjects of much writing recently, all of it already out of print. The David Irwin and Robert Rosenblum articles are still basic; the catalogue by Edgar Peters Bowron and Joseph J. Rishel is more recent and includes the Gallery’s painting. Both Hugh Honour and John Ingamells are excellent on the period in general and the tastes of the British in particular.

To access subscription-only articles, or for assistance with any of the below materials, please visit the Nolen Center Library at the Yale University Art Gallery.

On the Artist

Irwin, David. “Gavin Hamilton: Archaeologist, Painter, and Dealer.” Art Bulletin 44, no. 2 (June 1962): 87–102.

On the Painting

Rosenblum, Robert. “Gavin Hamilton’s ‘Brutus’ and Its Aftermath,” Burlington Magazine 103, no. 694 (January 1961): 8–16.

Bowron, Edgar Peters, and Joseph J. Rishel. Art in Rome in the Eighteenth Century. Philadelphia: Merrell Publishers, 2000: 295–303, 380–82.

Honour, Hugh. Neo-Classicism. New York: Penguin, 1968: 17–67.

Ingamells, John. “Discovering Italy: British Travelers in the Eighteenth Century.” In Andrew Wilton and Ilaria Bignamini, Grand Tour: The Lure of Italy in the Eighteenth Century. Exh. cat. London: Tate Gallery Publishers, 1996: 21–30.

On the Subject

Livy. Ab urbe condita libri. Book 1: esp. 1.49–1.59.
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Note: For the benefit of the lecture audience, we are supplying a recommended reading list as well as links to useful online sources. Any author or publisher who believes that his or her rights have been violated should contact Rights and Reproductions at the Yale University Art Gallery at yuagrights@yale.edu.