Rubens: Callisto, Jupiter and Diana. What is the fault of Callisto?

Jupiter – the main of the Olympian gods, by the way, married to Juno – soars over his possessions. And suddenly he – the Thunderer – seemed to be pierced by lightning:    

I’m amazed … The
girl he met – and the fire flares up in my veins. 

(Hereinafter , citations from Ovid’s Metamorphosis.)  

This girl is the nymph Callisto from the retinue of Diana , the goddess of the hunt.  

She was not engaged in carding wool for fabrics. Her
hairstyles did not know how to diversify.
Buckle held clothes on her, and her hair was a white bandage. 

Such a simpleton, no complaints. Well, very lazy! What did Jupiter find in it?

The girl entered the grove that had not been chopped up a century.
She immediately threw off the quiver from her shoulder and laid off the bow of the
Flexible, while she herself laid down on the grass covered ground; So, putting her painted tool under the back of the head, dozing. Only Jupiter saw the resting, completely without a guard … 

Even Jupiter preferred easy prey: no guard.

“The wife will not recognize this trick, probably, ” he said, “ If he does , then let him!” Isn’t that a woman’s abuse? ”  

The logic of a real god: a moment with molodochka costs a small family scandal!

Instantly, he and Diana take on the face
and says: “Are you not one of my companions?”

(Jupiter changed his appearance more than once, for him it was easier than a steamed turnip.)

The question of imaginary Diana, “Are you not one of my companions?” Did not surprise Callisto – and this is amazing! Did Diana have such severe sclerosis that she did not remember her nymphs and regularly asked: “Are you not one of my companions?” 

And the virgin from the lawn
Arose. “Hello, ” he says, “to the deity that in my reasoning More than Jupiter, let him at least hear!” Laughs Jupiter, Glad he prefers to himself, and gives kisses; He is immoderate, not so others kiss virgins.  

Rubens depicted a moment, so to speak, of a rapprochement: Jupiter is on the approaches. The naked nymph is still sitting, leaning on a quiver of arrows, on her face is a kind of mistrust. And Jupiter, as it were, hangs over it (a little off – an eagle, a symbol of Jupiter).   

She accepts his kisses because she thinks that Diana is in front of him. (But it also follows from this that she kissed Diana and other virgins – and more than once, it was familiar to her. What could it mean?)   

There is one detail in this story that does not fit with the ideas about Diana and her retinue: the nymph, as it were, should not walk alone, should not hunt alone. Why did Callisto want to break away from the mass? What kind of deer has it taken to another forest? 

He was going to the forest to tell the ready maiden.
He clutched himself in his arms – and he declared himself not innocently. 

Callisto wanted to answer the question, but did not have time: Jupiter began to squeeze it, and then – this is a very interesting turn! – “He declared himself not innocently.” In other words, his vile masculine essence betrayed him with his head!  

Resisting, she – as far as a woman can – With him comes into the struggle, but what kind of Jovian maiden Can she master ???  

Goodbye Innocence! And what is a seducer (if not to say – a rapist)? 

Winner Jupiter
Soared into the Sky.

What is called, neither “thank you”, nor “goodbye”! Callisto feels crushed, devastated, dishonored:  

The forest was disgusting her – a reliable witness – She almost forgot, moving away from there, her quiver. Take both arrows and a bow hanging on a branch nearby.  

But life goes on, it hunts as before. Meets his friends, Diana:

Here with his round dance Diktinn, along the heights of Menal
Walking, wild animals a proud proud slaughter,
Sees her and, seeing, calls; but in a startle,
Ta first flees away, fearing whether Jupiter is again before her. 

(“The Dictina Walking along the Menal Heights” – Diana walks along the Menal mountain range in Greece.) 

Diana calls a nymph, and Callisto is scared, afraid to be alone again with Jupiter:

But, having seen that the nymphs were walking with her,
Virgo decided that there were no intrigues here, and she joined them in the light crowd.
Like a crime – alas! – face is not difficult to show! Eyes barely lifted, went, but not next to the goddess, Somehow it happened; now out of the whole system is not the first.  

Apparently, Callisto for some merits occupied a high place among the nymphs.

Silently he goes and betrays his own reproach with a blush.
When she wasn’t a virgin, she could see Diana in a thousand signs They say, and they saw the nymphs!  

“Virgin when it had not been, could have seen a thousand signs Diana guilt” – Diana was a virgin, so she could not see the sin of Callisto. But what is interesting: “saw the nymphs”! So, the nymphs did not save themselves! But what about their vows of virginity?    

Lunar horns in the sky arose around the ninth,
As, from hunting, tired, tired by the flame of a brother,
Having come to a fresh grove, from where it streamed with murmur
A bright stream and rolled sand
into a wave, Approving the area, she touched the water with her foot
And, praising the stream, – “Far away, ” he says, “everyone spies naked bodies with a jet of running omoy! ” … Everyone took off their clothes …   

(“Lunar horns appeared in the sky around the ninth” – 9 months have passed since the fall of Callisto. “Tired of the brother’s flame” – the brother’s flame is the rays of the sun, which is embodied by Phoebe – Apollo, Diana’s brother. Diana herself is the personification of the moon, therefore there’s a moon in her diadem. In other words, Diana overheated in the sun.)     

For 9 months, only once washed in a clean stream? Imagine how this whole crowd rushes through the unwashed forest for almost a year!

In Rubens’s painting “Diana and Callisto” – bathing Diana and her retinue. The stream to the left, Diana has just emerged from the water, Keleno is wiping it (translated from Greek – darkness, darkness). Everyone was already redeemed, and Callisto delayed her exposure to the last, and the whole naked team helps her to take off her tunic. Callisto looked down, another second – and her sin will be exposed. Two nymphs undress her, three more observe this (apparently in anticipation of something unusual).   

And on the right is another, Maya (translated from Greek – the nurse), who looks at all this with compassion, sympathy. According to legend, she fed her son Callisto. She also suffered from Zeus, her son – Hermes. It may well be that Maya fed her son Callisto and her son Hermes at the same time with her milk.  

It is impossible to name the rest, because the total number of nymphs is 19, and only 8 are shown , including Callisto. They were all lovers of Jupiter and gave birth to children from him.

… She only lingers. They take off the embarrassed dress.
As soon as it slept, sin was revealed by nakedness.
Stunned, who tried to close the fold of his hands, – “Begone, – said – go, the spring did not fel me a saint!” – Kint and move away from their ordered her companions. 

Note that, until the very last month of pregnancy, a nymph with a stomach ran along the mountains with everyone, hunted – and never caught the eye of Diana! Maybe her goods covered, hid in the crowd? 

Sin is discovered. Diana drove Callisto out of her retinue, deprived her of her protection. It ended sadly: the jealous Juno did not want to repeat the connection of her husband Zeus with a nymph. She turned Callisto into a bear, which, after almost fifteen years, was nearly killed by her own son.

And all the fault of the unfortunate nymph is that she liked the ruler of the world …

PS If you compare both pictures, the difference in the image of the bodies is striking: Jupiter and Callisto look like young men with painted chest and hair. It is as if women are painted, but they look too masculine. This suggests that the picture was not painted by Rubens. Most likely, this painting was written by one of the students according to his plan. 

Maybe Rubens made a sketch, a sketch, and then walked with his brush over the already finished picture, but nothing more.

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