Hercules attached at the mouth by a cord to the ears of nine men; representing eloquence. Etching by C.N. Cochin and aquatint after Raphael.

  • Raphael, 1483-1520.
  • Pictures

About this work


Hercules, seated speaks to nine men: threads emerging from his mouth are attached to one of the ears of each of the listeners. The subject is said by Lucian in his work Herakles to be depicted in a painting that he claimed to have seen in Gaul: Lucian's Gallic interpreter explained to him that the Gauls regarded Hercules, not Hermes, as the god of eloquence (Hallowell, op. cit.)


[Paris], [1770?]

Physical description

1 print : etching, with aquatint ; platemark 28 x 25.3 cm


Hercule Gaulois, ou l'Éloquence. d'après le dessein de Raphaël, qui est dans le cabinet de Mr Crozat de la mesme grandeur de l'estampe gravé en cuivre par Charles Nicolas Cochin, et en bois par Vincent le Sueur Bears number: 38

References note

Robert E. Hallowell, 'Ronsard and the Gallic Hercules myth', Studies in the Renaissance, 1962, 9: 242-255 (mentions this composition on p. 249)
Not in: G.B. Pezzini, S. Massari, S.P. Valenti Rodinò, Raphael invenit, Roma: Edizioni Quasar, 1985
Marcel Roux, Inventaire du fonds français, graveurs du XVIIIe siècle, Bibliothèque nationale, Département des estampes, vol. IV, Paris 1940, possibly referred to on p. 611, no. 50, though the reference could be to the woodcut version
R. Weigel, Die Werke der Maler in ihren Handzeichnungen, Leipzig: R. Weigel, 1865, no. 7035, p. 594 ("Der Gallische Herkules oder die Beredsamkeit. [...] Aus den Sammlungen des Tim. Delle Vite, Antaldi, Crozat, Lagoy, Dimsdale, Lawrence, jetzt in Oxford [...]")


Wellcome Collection 3010913i

Creator/production credits

After a drawing (subsequently in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford) attributed by Crozat to Raphael; by Roux to G.F. Penni; by the Ashmolean Museum apparently to an unidentified follower of Raphael


Where to find it

  • LocationStatusAccess
    Closed stores

Permanent link