Paris and Oenone
Pieter Lastman was the most important history painter active in Amsterdam in the early decades of the 1600s. The subject of this painting, identifiable by the inscription in the tree behind the lovers, comes from the Roman poet Ovid. Oenone begs her husband, Paris, not to leave for Troy. Her sense of foreboding was prophetic: Paris’s abduction of Helen led to the Trojan War, Paris’s death, and Oenone’s subsequent suicide. This is perhaps the earliest pastoral landscape in Dutch art.