La morte del console Bruto LJ

Giambattista Tiepolo

Kunsthistorisches Museum

For the main hall of Ca' Dolfin in Venice, Tiepolo painted ten huge canvases in vertical format with scenes from Roman history. After the kings had been driven out of Rome, the young republic waged war against the Etruscans. The two generals, L. J. Brutus (the first consul of Rome) and Aruns Porsena (the son of the last king to be overthrown, Tarquinius Superbus), killed one another in hand-to-hand combat. Tiepolo, whose work sums up the great tradition of painting in Venice in a final climax, masks the horror of the event with his virtuoso artistry.