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Music (from the Tarocchi, series C: Liberal Arts, #26)

Music (from the Tarocchi, series C: Liberal Arts, #26)

before 1467

Part of a set. See all set records

Master of the E-Series Tarocchi

(Italian, 15th century)


Dudley P. Allen Fund 1924.432.26

Catalogue raisonné: Hind E.I. 26a


By the late Middle Ages, the artes liberals--Grammatica, Dialectica, Rhetorica, Geometria, Arithmetica, Astronomia, and Musica--began to be represented in the visual arts as female allegorical figures. In this engraving, music is personified as a young woman seated upon a swan and playing a recorder, known simply as a flute in the 15th century. At her feet are numerous musical instruments including a portative organ, lute, shawm, harp, and rebec. The swan can be interpreted as a symbol of song, based upon the ancient belief that the bird, which is mute all its life, sings in exquisite tones shortly before it dies.

See also
PR - Engraving
Type of artwork: 
Credit line: 
Dudley P. Allen Fund

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