Alexandre Evariste Fragonard
The Oath of Junius Brutus or The Death of Lucretia
Ca. 1797 - oil on canvas
Villa Musée Fragonard - Acquisition by the City of Grasse
Lucretia, a Roman woman famous for her beauty and virtue, was raped by the son of Tarquin the Proud, king of Rome. In desperation, she stabbed herself in front of her father, her husband and Lucius Junius Brutus. Junius Brutus vowed to pursue Tarquin by any means, as well as the members of his family, and to no longer tolerate a king in Rome. Thus, in 509 B.C., he established the Republic.
This painting was probably made around 1797, under the obvious influence of both Jean-Honoré Fragonard (The Oath of Junius Brutus engraved by Gauthier d'Agoty) and Jacques-Louis David (The Oath of the Horatii, 1784).