Sexual Fables

This article accompanies the fable
Beauty & the Beast

The Death of Hyacinth

Who needs women anyway? Below is The Death of Hyacinthos, by French painter Jean Broc in 1801 (it is in the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Poitiers).

The god Apollo cradles the dying Hyacinth, who has been struck fatally by the discus at their feet. Apollo had thrown it but it was blown off course by Zephyr, the god of the West Wind, who was insanely jealous of the relationship. It's a strikingly homoerotic painting, even if everyone at the time pretended it wasn't. The Hyacinth flower is said to come from Hyancinthos' blood.


Compare this with the classic Greek pottery below from around 480 BC with Hyacinth on the right, Zephyr on the left.


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