ANDREA DEL CASTAGNO
(b. 1423, Castagno, d. 1457, Firenze)
Famous Persons: Queen Tomyrisc. 1450
Fresco transferred to wood, 245 x 155 cm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence
The picture shows one of the three famous women represented in the cycle.
Tomyris was the queen of nomadic people of central Asia in ancient times. According to Herodotus (1:214), Cyrus the Great, the founder of the Persian empire, met his death in battle against her. Because of the circumstances, the episode came to be regarded as symbolic act of justice, and paintings of it were commissioned to hang in courts of law. Moreover, Medieval typology made Tomyris a prefiguration of the Virgin triumphing over the Satan.