Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo | The Procession of the Trojan Horse into Troy | NG3319 | National Gallery, London

The Building of the Trojan Horse and The Procession of the Trojan Horse are part of a series illustrating the fall of Troy, an ancient city on the coast of Turkey that was besieged by Greek armies for ten years. The Trojan War was one of the most important events in Greek mythology.

According to Virgil’s Aeneid (Book 2), the Greeks built a giant wooden horse in which they could hide their men, and left it outside the impregnable walls of Troy. The Trojans, believing it to be a gift, wheeled it inside the city. Under the cover of darkness, the Greek soldiers climbed out of the horse and took Troy.

Painted in around 1760, these scenes were probably intended as preparatory designs for larger oil paintings. Domenico’s monumental The Building of the Trojan Horse is in the Wadsworth Atheneum, in the United States, but the whereabouts of the other large canvasses is not known.
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