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This picture shows the meeting of the Trojan prince Aeneas and the Carthaginian queen Dido, from Virgil’s epic poem, the Aeneid. Aeneas was shipwrecked near Carthage after the sack of Troy. The goddess Venus made Dido fall in love with him and helped him to hide in her citadel. He watches Dido welcome his fellow Trojans and when she asks to see their ‘king’ the mist clears and Aeneas reveals his identity. Dance-Holland made this picture while he was in Rome and sent it to London to be exhibited as a way to advertise his imminent return to Britain.

February 2016