- Museum number
Tecmessa, to left, leaning over the dead body of Ajax who is lying on the floor, nude child (possibly Eurysaces) seated on the floor in the foreground and Teucer seated in a rock behind; the Greek fleet and tents along the Troian coastline to left; rising sun to right.
Etching with aquatint, printed in brown ink.
- Production date
- 1807-1811 (c)
Height: 170 millimetres
Width: 253 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Text from Antony Griffiths and Frances Carey, 'German Printmaking in the Age of Goethe', BM 1994, no. 50 :
The subject derives from Sophocles's tragedy 'Ajax'. Ajax in fury had wished to kill his fellow Greek chieftains, but had killed only sheep instead. In his shame he fell on his sword. The action of the tragedy revolves around the question as to whether the corpse should be given a proper burial. Teucer, Ajax's half-brother, is supported by Odysseus and overcomes Agamemnon's objections. Tecmessa, Ajax's slave-wife, and her son Eurysaces are the final victims of the tragedy. In the print, the Greek fleet besieging Troy can be seen drawn up along the water's edge.
Russ's prints derive from his paintings and drawings. His earliest etchings made between 1807 and 1810, of varying size and format, were published in 1810 or 1811 by Artaria in Vienna in a set of nineteen which includes a titleplate lettered 'Eigene in Kupfer gebracht Ideen von Karl Russ, Maler'. 1854,1020.737, 1854,1020.771, 1854,1020.780 and 1854,1020.724 appear in this set; the published states have the numbers from 1 to 19 added in the top left corners (eg. 1854,1020.780). All nineteen prints reappear on p. 61 of the 1816 Frauenholz catalogue, offered both as a set and individually.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1994/5 Sept-Jan, BM, 'German Printmaking in the Age of Goethe', no. 50
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number