Large Parianware Group ""Abduction of Europa by Zeus as a Bull""

Large Parianware Group ""Abduction of Europa by Zeus as a Bull""

Large Parianware Group ""Abduction of Europa by Zeus as a Bull""

United Kingdom
Circa 1850
A mid 19th century Parian-ware group figure depicting The abduction of Europa by Zeus as a white Bull.

Europa was the beautiful daughter of the Phoenician king of Tyre, Agenor.

Zeus, the King of the gods according to Greek mythology, saw Europa as she was gathering flowers and immediately fell in love with her.

Overwhelmed by love for Europa, Zeus transformed himself into the form of a magnificent white bull and appeared where Europa was gathering flowers with her maidens. The great bull walked gently over to where Europa stood and knelt at her feet. The appearance and movements of the bull were so gentle that Europa spread flowers about his neck and dared to climb upon his back overcoming her natural fear of the great animal.

But suddenly, the bull rushed over the sea abducting Europa and took her to the Mediterranean island of Crete. There, Zeus cast off the shape of the white bull, and back into his human form, made Europa his lover. Europa became the first queen of Crete and had by Zeus three sons: King Minos of Crete, King Rhadamanthus of the Cyclades Islands, and, according to some legends, Prince Sarpedon of Lycia. Eventually Zeus reproduced the shape of the white bull used to seduce Europa in the stars. Even today we can recognize its shape in the constellation Taurus.

H 29.50cm (11.61 inches)
W 31.00cm (12.20 inches)
D 29.00cm (11.42 inches)

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