CAIRO, Francesco del
(b. 1607, Milano, d. 1665, Milano)

Herodias with the Head of Saint John the Baptist

Oil on canvas, 119 x 95 cm
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

In this painting, Cairo made the macabre subject even more disturbing through dramatic lighting and the vivid realism with which he portrayed Herodias swooning in ecstasy as she mutilates the tongue that spoke against her.