Eurydice - 1880 Marble
Joseph Edgar Boehm - V&A Museum
In Greek mythology, Orpheus was the greatest musician that ever lived. When he played the lyre and sang, he could command inanimate objects, charm animals, seduce human beings and even enthrall Gods. As fate would have it, he fell in love with a woman called Eurydice, but their love was short lived because moments after the wedding, his wife was stung by a viper and died.
The sculpture above depicts the exact moment when Eurydice was fatally bitten by the serpent. She raises her left leg, touches the wound and gazes lovingly at her husband as if to bid him a final farewell. As a tragic love story, Orpheus then does what no other mortal had the courage to do, he enters the realm of death in an attempt to rescue his wife from the underworld.