MANTEGNA, Andrea
(b. 1431, Isola di Cartura, d. 1506, Mantova)

Triumphs of Caesar (scene 4)

1485-95
Tempera on canvas, 267 x 278 cm
Royal Collection, Hampton Court

This scene shows bearers of vases and containers filled with coins, youth leading oxen and trumpeters. The left-hand section of this painting has been overpainted. However, the young man to the right, painted in brighter colours, together with the ox beside him, show Mantegna's finely differentiated style of painting. With his blond curls and graceful stance, the boy represents an ideal found in Mantegna's later works. On the banners we can see the letters SPQR, the abbreviation of Senatus Populusque Romanus (the Senate and the Populace of Roma).