barber institute of fine arts
university of birmingham


Aegidius Sadeler II (1570-1629)

Daedalus & Icarus

Etching

234 x 304 mm

 

In a scene based on the classical story of Daedalus and Icarus and their escape from Crete, Daedalus gestures with despair as his son Icarus falls from the sky. The ploughman looks up while the seated peasants laugh and point. This story was often associated with the dangers of going to extremes, and peasant labour was particularly related to Christian steadfastness and perseverance. Icarus’ fall has distracted the peasants from their Christian duties suggesting that similar extremes could divert true Christians from their righteous path.

Purchased 2002 (No.2002.1)

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