TIZIANO Vecellio
(b. 1490, Pieve di Cadore, d. 1576, Venezia)

The Legend of Polydorus

Oil on wood, 35 x 162 cm
Museo Civico, Padua

The two panels in the Padua museum, The Birth of Adonis and The Legend of Polydorus, are so-called cassone paintings, made to be set into wooden chests as a form of decoration. Each work shows an episode from Ovid's Metamorphoses, divided into three scenes.

In The Legend of Polydorus, the murder of Polydorus takes place at the right edge of the picture. On the order of his father, King Priam, Polydorus brought Troys gold to his brother-in-law for safekeeping, but the latter murdered him out of greed. In the centre, the burning Troy is visible. The female figures on the left are thought to be Hecuba (his mother), and a servant.

The attribution of these two works to Titian is disputed.