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Jacob de Wit
The Epic Poem
This ceiling painting comes from a house in Leiden (Rapenburg 48) and has been hanging here since 1912. Apollo, the classical god of the arts, is depicted on the oval centrepiece. He is surrounded by his nine muses, who stand for the various artistic disciplines. The four grisailles around the centrepiece represent the elegy, the comedy, the pastoral song and the epos.
In the eighteenth century, the Amsterdam artist Jacob de Wit was the leading expert in this type of illusionist tour de force.