Three women and death, by La Perrière (1553)



Three women and death, by La Perrière (1553)


Emblem with the following inscription in Latin, from Glasgow University Library: SM689

Archived in:

"Nunc licèt instantis timeam conamina Parcae,
Et brevis incertos terminet hora dies.
Quid tum? quo noceat cineri Fortuna sepulto,
Nihil habet, à tumulo livor & omnis abit."
("Now I can rightly fear the attack of the threatening Parcae [Fates], and a swift hour finishes my uncertain days. What then? Fortune has no way to harm ashes once interred, and all envy departs from the grave.").

The emblem represents three naked women and a skeleton without any gender specific traits. The naked women appear from left to right; stepping on a ball, holding a snake and lastly holding a staff on her right hand and the skeleton with her left hand. 

Gender perspective: This emblem represents the tribulations of life, represented here as allegorical female figures, such as envy with a snake, which are alos an allusion to the parcae, is counteracted by genderoless death as a skeleton.


de la Perrière, Guillaume (c. 1503-c. 1565)




Dimensions: Unknown

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