Phryne stands naked before the judges, Jean-Leon Gerome, 1861

Phryne stands naked before the judges, Jean-Leon Gerome, 1861

In the image attached to post you can admire a painting of the French Jean-Leon Gerome, that in 1861, when it was created and subsequently exposed, He did not fail to arouse a scandal in the artistic circles in Paris at; now kept in a room of Museum Hamburger Kunsthalle of Hamburg, the work, on historical themes, It depicts the most famous episode of process Frine, which took place in the Areopagus of Athens in the mid-fourth century B.C..

But who was Phryne?

Phryne was actually the “stage name” of Mnesarete, a young man who after a difficult childhood was successful, thanks to’ indisputable physical attractiveness and to a certain dose of cunning, to accumulate a huge fortune thanks to its activities Etéra successfull; teenager, She was a model and lover of the great sculptor Praxiteles, who had immortalized, naked and statuary, in many of his masterpieces.

around 345 a.C. But, the luck seemed to turn his back to the woman, who he was dragged to court by the Athenian Eutia, with serious charge, punishable by death, that it bathed in the sacred waters of Eleusis and to have worshiped Isodaite, a new goddess.

As part of Gérome stand out clearly on the right judges, wrapped in a striking red toga, Phryne and left a clear attitude of shame after Iperide, his defender and lover, He has just ripped his clothes off leaving her completely naked before the assembly, a brilliant gimmick, since the perfect features and pale skin, from which the accusers, before likely for sentencing, They remained literally dazzled, finally allowed the girl to be paid.

Although almost certainly the story is invented, it is, however, that the'Etéra It was actually exonerated, and although her the traces were lost just after the process, the echo of her beauty, become legendary, It remained unchanged in later centuries, and perhaps even increased (Photo gives: commons.wikimedia.rg).