#PhotoPromptFriday: “Cimon and Pero” by Peter Paul Rubens

729px-Peter_Paul_Rubens_-_Cimon_and_Pero_(Roman_Charity)_-_WGA20420

The above scene from last week’s #PhotoPromptFriday is titled “Cimon and Pero”, and it is such a bizarre story to be associated with what first looks like such a lewd image. However, this picture depicts something that is relevant even today: breastfeeding.

The specific narrative that Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) presents here is often called ‘Caritas Romana’. The classical story tells how Cimon, an old man, awaiting death penalty by starvation, is frequently visited in prison by his daughter Pero. She secretly breastfeeds him and thus saves her father’s life. One day, her actions are discovered by the authorities, but Pero’s altruism makes such an impression on them that her act is forgiven and in the end, Cimon is released.

http://rijksmuseumamsterdam.blogspot.com/2010/11/petrus-paulus-rubens-cimon-and-pero-ca.html

 

I haven’t had time to prepare a narrative to this story, but I promise to release one on Saturday. As such, if anyone else would still like to submit a story to go along with this painting, the deadline has been extended this week until Saturday at 8PM.

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