- Reference number
- Titian [Vecellio di Gregorio Tiziano]
- Salome with the Head of John the Baptist
- Ca. 1550
- 87 cm x 80 cm
- On display
- Royal Collection (Royal Palace, Madrid, “secretaría de Estado”, 1814-1818, nº 659?)
Salome, the daughter of Herod Philip and Herodias, asks Herod for the head of Saint John the Baptist as payment for her dancing (Matthew 14, 3-12; Mark 6, 17-29; Luke 3, 19-20).
The composition focuses on Salome, who is brightly lit, relegating Saint John's head to the middle ground. Salomé, whom Titian modeled after his daughter, Lavinia, draws the viewer into the event by looking out from the painting.
This work was purchased by the Marquis of Leganés at the auction of the belongings of Charles I of England. It entered the Royal Collection following the Marquis' death in 1665 and was first listed in the 1666 inventory of Madrid's Alcázar Palace.