“Susannah and the Two Elders”
Oil on Canvas, Framed 60″ x 69″
The Venetian artist Paolo Cagliari, known as Veronese after his birthplace in the city of Verona, was born in 1528. His father Gabriele was a stonecutter by trade and by the age of fourteen his son was apprenticed to a local artist Antonio Badile. The talented young Paolo began to develop his own style including a lighter and more colourful palette. He left Badile’s workshop in 1543.
The artist then moved to the city of Mantua in the province of Lombardy and completed frescoes in the city’s cathedral. He arrived in Venice in 1552/53 and it is in Venice and the surrounding regions that he created his most memorable works.
Story: Two elders of Babylon lusted after the beautiful Susanna, and conspired to spy on her while she bathed. One afternoon, after Susanna had sent her maidservants away, the two elders approached her, confessed their lust, and insisted that she lie with them. They threaten to accuse her of adultery with a young man if she refused. When Susanna adamently refused, the elders cried out their accusations, and Susanna was sentenced to death for the crime of adultery. A young man named Daniel insisted on further investigation, and upon interrogating the elders separately, found discrepancies in their stories. Susanna was vindicated, and Daniel earned great respect.