Skip to main content

Pierre Subleyras, Diana and Endymion

Key facts
Full title Diana and Endymion
Artist Pierre Subleyras
Artist dates 1699 - 1749
Date made about 1745
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 73.5 × 99 cm
Acquisition credit Accepted by HM Government in lieu of tax and allocated to the National Gallery, 2002
Inventory number NG6592
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
Diana and Endymion
Pierre Subleyras

This painting shows an episode from Ovid’s Art of Love (Book III: 83). The Roman goddess Diana would visit the shepherd Endymion every night while he slept. According to Cicero, Diana herself induced Endymion’s sleep so that she could enjoy him undisturbed. The subject was a popular one and had been painted by other French artists.

In 1728 Subleyras arrived in Rome to study, and he remained there for the rest of his life. This picture, particularly Endymion’s reclining pose, shows Subleyras’s knowledge of antique sculpture and Italian Renaissance painting. The painting’s balanced composition and restrained depiction of its poetic source – for example, the delicate way Diana barely touches Endymion’s face – connects it to pastoral and classical tastes that were promoted in Rome at the time.

Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download a low-resolution copy of this image for personal use.

License this image

License and download a high-resolution image for reproductions up to A3 size from the National Gallery Picture Library.

License image
Download low-resolution image

This image is licensed for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons agreement.

Examples of non-commercial use are:

  • Research, private study, or for internal circulation within an educational organisation (such as a school, college or university)
  • Non-profit publications, personal websites, blogs, and social media

The image file is 800 pixels on the longest side.

As a charity, we depend upon the generosity of individuals to ensure the collection continues to engage and inspire. Help keep us free by making a donation today.

Download low-resolution image

You must agree to the Creative Commons terms and conditions to download this image.

Creative Commons Logo