The painting was commissioned by Anthony Ashley Cooper, 3rd Earl of Shaftesbury, to complete the project for a history painting outlined in the Earl's 'A Notion of the Historical Draught of Hercules'.

Shaftesbury's persistent ill health forced him to retire to Naples where he wrote the work.


Earls of Shaftesbury by descent until sold at Christie's.

Ashmolean Museum

Beaumont Street, Oxford, Oxfordshire, OX1 2PH
01865 278000

Opening times

Daily: 10:00am - 17:00pm

Open until 20:00 on the last friday of every month excluding December

Exhibitions at Ashmolean Museum

Back to top