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Hercules and Cerberus: C.67-1950

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 26 (Lower Marlay)


Hercules and Cerberus


Factory: Le Nove Porcelain Factory




Hard-paste porceleain painted in enamels

Hard-paste porcelain, press-moulded, glazed, and painted in green, pink, red, shades of brown, grey, and black enamels; the deeply concave underside is also glazed, and has a small ventilation split under the tree stump. The figures are supported on a high circular rocky base, painted naturalistically in green and shades of grey and black. On the viewer's right is a greyish-brown tree stump with roots extending downwards to the edge. Hercules (or Herakles) stands beside the stump on his right leg with his left extended behind him. His head is turned to his left and he leans back slightly. He has dark brown curly hair and beard, red lips, and delicately delineated brown brows and eyes. Here and there there on his back and limbs there are tinges of pink on his white skin. A brown lion skin and mask is draped around his hips.In his left hand he holds the lower end of a large dappled brown club which rests on his left shoulder. He holds a knotted rope in his right hand which is extended downwards towards.. Cerberus, in the form of a friendly-looking black and white dog with three open-mouthed heads, is seated beside him. His left front paw is raised towards Hercules, and his tail is curled round and extends beyond the edge of the base. On his neck there is the remains of a rope which originally joined up with the knot held in Hercules’s hand.


History note: Unknown before donor, Mrs W.D. (Frances Louisa) Dickson

Legal notes

Given by Mrs W.D. Dickson

Measurements and weight

Height: 21.9 cm
Width: 11.8 cm

Relative size of this object

11.8 cm21.9 cm What does this represent?

Relative size of this object is displayed using code inspired by Good Form and Spectacle's work on the British Museum's Waddeson Bequest website and their dimension drawer. They chose a tennis ball to represent a universally sized object, from which you could envisage the size of an object.

Place(s) associated

  • Le Nove ⪼ The Veneto ⪼ Italy

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (1950-09) by Dickson, W. D. (Frances Louisa), Mrs


Late 18th century
Antonibon-Parolin period
Circa 1785 CE - 1795 CE

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration composed of enamel ( green, pink, red, shades of brown, grey, and black)
Base Width 10.5 cm

Materials used in production

Hard-paste porcelain

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: nove
  • Location: On underside of base
  • Method of creation: Incised
  • Type: Factory mark
  • Text: 1553
  • Location: On underside of base
  • Method of creation: Hand-written in black
  • Type: Label

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.67-1950
Primary reference Number: 140343
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Sunday 20 March 2022 Last processed: Sunday 20 March 2022

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Hercules and Cerberus" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-06-02 17:53:18

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{{cite web|url= |title=Hercules and Cerberus |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-06-02 17:53:18|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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