LivyLivy (about 59 BC - AD 17) was a Roman historian who was born in Padua. He is famous for his 'History of Rome', a mammoth work which started with the legendary foundation of the city. The 'History' was not simply a narrative, it described a series of exemplars of different moral types, which was a fruitful source of inspiration to artists. Bacchiacca depicted one of these figures, 'Marcus Curtius' who sacrificed himself in order to save the city.
The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN