Cornelis van Haarlem: The Fall of the Titans (1588-1590)

(Statens Museum for Kunst, Kopenhagen, Denmark)

A painting by the Dutch artist Cornelis Corneliszoon van Haarlem (1562 – 1638). A typical example of the Haarlem Mannerist style, this painting shows what is called the Titanomachy. The Titanomachy is the war which was fought between the Titans, giant deities who were the children of the primordial Gaia (Mother Earth) and Uranus (Father Sky), against the Olympic gods (Zeus, Poseidon, Athena, Apollo etc). The war lasted ten years and ended with a victory of the Olympic gods. The defeated Titans were thrown into Tartarus (shown on the painting), the deepest part of the Underworld, from where they cause earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Painting from 1588-1590.