According to classical myth, when Oedipus guessed the Sphinx's riddle he won the kingdom of Thebes and a wife in the person of Jocasta, who was later revealed to be his mother.

Ingres's first version of this subject (Paris, Louvre) is dated 1808. Ingres reworked it in about 1826-27 and this picture may have been made as a model in connection with the alterations.

Key facts

Artist
Artist dates
1780 - 1867
Full title
Oedipus and the Sphinx
Date made
about 1826
Medium and support
Oil on canvas
Dimensions
17.5 x 13.7 cm
Inscription summary
Signed
Acquisition credit
Bought, 1918
Inventory number
NG3290
Location in Gallery