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Melpomene, Muse of Tragedy, c. 1836
Plaster. 64,5 cm diameter
Inventory number: A331
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Melpomene, the serious Muse of Tragedy, is recognised by the laurel wreath along with the club, the symbol of heroic strength, and primarily the tragic mask. According to Greek mythology, the nine muses, the goddesses of music, poetry and subsequently also other intellectual pursuits such as art in its broadest sense, history, philosophy and astronomy were born on Olympus as the daughters of Jupiter and Mnemosyne, and there entertaining the other gods. Meanwhile, they also revealed themselves to human beings, who attributed them with omniscience and a supernatural but strange ability to inspire. The words music and museum are derived from the word muse.