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With his work, Nicolas Poussin shows us the last minutes of Germanicus, the Roman commander and future emperor. As the son of Tiberius, he had a high influence, as well as all the possibilities, to soon change his father. However, unexpectedly for everyone, the disease coughs him up.
Against the main background, we see a tormented, pale man who is in the last minutes of his life. Nevertheless, knowing about his imminent demise, his gaze does not express the indifference that is inherent in his position. Not. It is as if tired and annoyed turns his head away from the annoying crowd that surrounded him. One can only guess what they say to him not. But one thing is clear - he does not care about that.
Judging by the exposed index finger, Germanicus seems to be showing something to his mourners. Maybe this is a request regarding his loved ones, who are sitting to his right. Or maybe a request to leave the room. The second option would not be surprising when looking at the expression on the faces of those present.
And those present, in turn, have different intentions. Some seem to smile and say something merrily to Germanicus. Which reflects either the joy of his death, or the encouragement of military comrades. One of the guests turned their backs to us, but by his gesture - the index finger pointing upward, it is clear that he is making some kind of statement. This may be a promise to punish the guilty, or it may be a demand. As soon as you notice that a wreath is on his head, it becomes clear that the Roman emperor is standing in front of the bed.
Only some of the warriors cover their faces with their hands. Surely these are the loyal servants of their master. They drifted into the background and, silently, escorted their master. One of the loyal warriors holds Germanicus by the shoulder. One can see how he is embittered looking in the direction of a noisy crowd, but no one pays attention to him.
Chagall Pictures Pictures