Theseus Slaying the Centaur Bianor, c. 1850 (modeled, cast c. 1891)

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Theseus, one of the great heroes of Greek myth, was asked to attend the wedding of his good friend the king of the Lapiths. The king also invited the neighbors, the half-human, half-horse Centaurs. Big mistake. The Centaurs drank too much wine and tried to kidnap the bride. Theseus quickly stepped in, fighting them off and saving her.

This subject appealed to Antoine-Louis Barye, an accomplished sculptor of animals—which he studied at the Paris zoo. Barye displayed his plaster model for the sculpture in Paris in 1850. This version, however, was probably cast in 1891, the year the railroad baron James J. Hill purchased it for his house on Summit Avenue in St. Paul.



Barye, Theseus Slaying a Centaur (#514)
Theseus Slaying the Centaur Bianor
Artist Life
Accession Number
Curator Approved

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