The incident shown in this tapestry is described in more or less the same details by Plutarch in his account of the life of Alexander the Great. King Alexander, seeing his troops suffering from thirst, refuses to take water. The action takes place in military encampement. Two men in armor...
The incident shown in this tapestry is described in more or less the same details by Plutarch in his account of the life of Alexander the Great. King Alexander, seeing his troops suffering from thirst, refuses to take water. The action takes place in military encampement. Two men in armor appear in the foreground: at the left, a half-kneeling figure appeals to the man standing at the right. The latter, crowned and wearing a flowing mantle, lifts a water-filled helmet in both hands and pours some of the liquid on the ground. Soldiers, a woman, and children standing in the middle distance watch this scene. Other soldiers and women appear in or near the tents in the distance. The horizon is marked with hills and a castle or town. The borders at the sides and bottom show fruits, flowers, and vegetables arranged in bouquets or on arbors. At the top of each side border a satyr squats and plays a wind instrument; below each of these figures appears a female figure holding a palm branch (Mercy). In the center of the lower border a woman feeds a child from her breast (Charity); at each end of the border a female figure with a child and branch (Charity) half reclines on a cart. In the upper border the following text appears inscribed in a cartouche which fills the space entirely: DVX POPVLO PEREVNTE SITI NEC COPIA LYMPHE SVFFICERET CVNCTIS IPSE RECVSAT AQVAS ("When the people were dying of thirst, and the supply of water would not suffice for all, the leader himself refuses water.")
See Description. A Brussels mark appears in the left end of the lower outer guard
By 1913, George von Lengerke Meyer (b. 1858 - d. 1918), Boston; by descent to his widow, Marian Alice Appleton Meyer (b. 1862), Boston; by descent to their children, George von Lengerke Meyer, Jr., Alice Meyer (Mrs. Phillip) Coffin, and Julia Meyer Brambilla, Boston; 1953, gift of Mrs. Phillip A. Coffin, Julia Meyer Brambilla, Mrs. E. Calvert Cheston, and Charles A. Meyer to the MFA. (Accession Date: November 12, 1953)
Gift of Mrs. Philip Coffin (Alice Meyer Coffin), Mme Brambilla (Julia Meyer Brambilla), Mrs. E. Calvert Cheston (Nancy M. Cheston) and Mr. Charles A. Meyer
Flemish (Brussels), Second half of 16th century or first half of the 17th century