Dead Hector. Briton Riviere, RA (1840-1920). 1892. Oil on canvas. Measurements: 76.8 x 122.7 cm. Manchester Art Gallery. Accession no. 1917.259; gift from Mr James Gresham, 1917. Image available on the ArtUK website for sharing and reuse on the CC BY-NC-ND (Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives) licence [click to enlarge the image]. Commentary by Jacqueline Banerjee.

Among Riviere's output are some dramatic biblical and classical works, including this one which shows the vanquished Hector cast, dead and naked, to the wolves by Achilles in the Iliad. It was a dishonourable end to a warrior's life, and (in a typical touch for this artist) one of the wolves seems to be howling as if to lament the fall of so great a hero. The white luminous and supple corpse contrasts markedly with the desolate surroundings and threatened, ugly fate.


"Briton Riviere: The Miracle of the Gaderene Swine." Tate. Web. 7 October 2018.

Reynolds, Simon. "Riviere, Briton (1840–1920), painter." Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Web. 7 October 2018.

Created 7 October 2018