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The sorceress Medea was jilted by Jason, and slew their children to spite him. Here she performs an incantation. Ingredients for her spell are scattered on the ground to the left. She appears again above, fleeing Corinth in a chariot, and hurling her murdered children behind her.

Turner painted, and first exhibited, this picture in Rome. The coloured rope frame is a replica of the one he originally used.

February 2004