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Tsar Ivan the Terrible Admiring Vasilisa Melentieva. 1875

Sedov Grigory,
Oil on canvas
137 х 172

Пост. в 1897 из ИАХ


Vasilisa Melentieva was the sixth wife of Ivan the Terrible, taken by him as a concubine without any wedding ceremony. Suspected of infidelity, she was forcibly confined to a nunnery in 1577. Sedov''s painting is probably based more on Alexander Ostrovsky''s drama "Vasilisa Melentieva" than on historical fact. According to the writer, Ivan found out about Vasilisa''s feelings for Prince Devyatlov when she called out his name in her sleep. Sedov depicts Tsar Ivan gazing ardently at his sleeping wife, who is about to let slip the name of her lover. The treatment of Russian history as dramatic events, including the personal lives of the tsars and those around them, was a distinguishing characteristic of Russian art of this era.

Author's Biography

Sedov Grigory

Sedov, Grigory Semenovich
1836, Moscow - 1884, Moscow
Painter. Studied at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture and the Imperial Acad¬emy of Arts (1857 1866). Awarded a major silver medal (1858), minor silver medal (1859), minor gold medal (1864) for Mercury Lulls Argus to Sleep, major gold medal and a title of first-class artist (1866) for Vladimir Turns to Christianity. Fellow of the Imperial Academy of Arts in Paris (1867–1870). Contributed to the exhibitions (from 1862). Academician (1870).

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