Fr. Perrier le Bourgignon (1590-1650); Master Engraving Ganymede Mythology 1652
In Greek mythology, Ganymede is a divine hero whose homeland was Troy. Homer describes Ganymede as the most beautiful of mortals, and in one version of the myth, Zeus falls in love with his beauty and abducts him in the form of an eagle to serve as cup-bearer in Olympus. The myth was a model for the Greek social custom of paiderastía, the socially acceptable romantic relationship between an adult male and an adolescent male. The Latin form of the name was Catamitus (and also "Ganymedes"), from which the English word catamite is derived. According to Plato, the Cretans were regularly accused of inventing the myth because they wanted to justify their "unnatural pleasures".
Copper engraving, 1652 (Second State).
Leaf: 31 x 18.6 cm
Monogrammed in the plate FPB
François Perrier (1590–1650) was a French painter, draftsman, and printmaker. Perrier was instrumental in introducing into France the grand style of the decorative painters of the Roman Baroque. He is also remembered for his two collections of prints after antique sculptures, the Segmenta nobilium signorum et statuarum quae temporis dentem invidium evasere (Paris, 1638), and Icones et segmenta...quae Romae adhuc extant (Paris, 1645). These prints provided visual repertories of classical models for generations of European artists and connoisseurs. In 1648, Perrier was one of the founders of the French Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture and was elected as one of the original twelve elders in charge of its running.