Milo of Croton
Milo of Croton, Attempting to Test His Strength, Is Caught and Devoured by a Lion
oil on canvas
Charles Meynier (1768-1832)
"The story of the ancient Greek athlete Milo of Croton is an allegory of pride and vanity. The aging Milo wants to show his strength by pulling a split tree trunk apart. His hand gets caught and, unable to escape, he is devoured by wild beasts. Following the celebrated Milo of Croton by sculptor Pierre Puget, Meynier decided to replace the wolves described in literary sources with a lion, thus creating a pendant to his Androcles, who was spared by a lion he had cared for. The final pair of large paintings no longer survive; only this very polished preliminary canvas remains."