Versailles Porcelain

On 16 May Chateau Versailles began to exhibit some of the porcelain pieces of Sèvres that used to be in the royal collection: today the royal porcelain is scattered all over the world and only occasionally we see it reunited in a meaningful way and then no pictures are allowed; but I still stole one while the person on duty was texting; and now I too have something to write about, for what we see is a late XVIII century vase illustrating the myth of Callisto.

Callisto was a female companion of Artemis; and, as you see on the vase, Zeus has changed himself into his daughter to seduce her chaste votary. Immediately the love story turns into a Greek tragedy: Callisto gives birth to Arcas, and the boy almost kills his mom, who has been transformed into a bear by jealous Artemis; but Zeus comes to the rescue, places the mother and the child into protective custody up in the sky; and thereafter Callisto is known as the Big Dipper, Ursa Major, or Big Bear, with her son right next to her, Ursa Minor, or Little Bear.


About versaillesgossip, before and after Francis Ponge

The author of the blogs Versailles Gossip and Before and After Francis Ponge, Vadim Bystritski lives and teaches in Brest France. The the three main themes of his literary endeavours are humor, the French Prose Poetry, the French XVII and XVIII Century Art and History. His writings and occasionally art has been published in a number of ezines (Eratio, Out of Nothing, Scars TV, etc). He also contributes to Pinterest where he comments on the artifiacts from the Louvre and other collections. Some of his shorter texts are in Spanish, Russian and French.
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