User Menu

MFA for Educators

Engage your students with the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to illustrate themes and concepts in any discipline.

Tapestry: The Defeat of Astyages (from the series, The Life of Cyrus)

Start collecting

The weaving depicts the third in series of five tapestries illustrating the story of Cyrus, founder of the Persian empire, when he defeated Astyages, King of the Median empire. The victorious young Cyrus stands in the center of the tapestry, pointing with his left hand to a group of lamenting...

Show Full Description


There is two marks, one of them is the Brussel's weavers mark , the other one is: IAC : VD: BORGHT


The set of five tapestries were said to be in collection of Austrian royal family until 1914 when they were sold to Dr. G.H.L. Fitzwilliam, formerly medical adviser to the Austrian court. Said to have hung in Madingley Hall, near Cambridge, England, until sale at Christies in 1976. Purchased with the Charles Potter Kling Fund, April 1976.

Credit Line

Charles Potter Kling Fund

about 1771–75

Object Place

Brussels, Flanders


408 x 607 cm (160 5/8 x 239 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Tapestry weave (wool warp; wool and silk wefts)


Textiles and Fashion Arts