The J. Paul Getty Museum

Demetrius Nicator, King of Syria, Killed as He Attempts to Land at Tyre

Object Details

Title:

Demetrius Nicator, King of Syria, Killed as He Attempts to Land at Tyre

Artist/Maker:

Unknown

Culture:

French

Place:

Paris, France (Place Created)

Date:

about 1413–1415

Medium:

Tempera colors, gold leaf, gold paint, and ink on parchment

Object Number:

Ms. 63 (96.MR.17), fol. 165v

Dimensions:

Leaf: 42 × 29.6 cm (16 9/16 × 11 5/8 in.)

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Object Description

The blood-red sky and green ocean form a menacing background against which the devious action of this miniature unfolds: a guard drives his battle-ax into Demetrius Nicator's back as he attempts to land in Tyre. Demetrius, king of Syria, was unpopular among his troops and subjects. His pride was his downfall, and he was deposed and imprisoned several times. Defeated and deserted by his wife and children, the king left Syria, taking a boat to Tyre. He planned to devote himself to the service of the god Hercules, who had a temple there. He arrived safely at the port, but the prefect of Tyre had him killed as he left his ship.