Roman Men, Sabine Women


This book cover came across my twitter feed today.  It riffs on RRC 344/1 and its depiction of the Rape of the Sabine Women.  The reverse design re-imagined with more modern assumptions of bodies made me look at the bodies of the original more closely.   I realized that because of the direction of the women’s arms I’d always read the type as the their being carried off stage left.  This isn’t the case.  The two men face each other and make eye contact.  There feet and legs suggest they are run towards each other not off in the same direction.  The scene is the “we got them, now what?” moment of the seizure and rape.  I want to think more about this…

2 thoughts on “Roman Men, Sabine Women”

  1. I’ve always been fascinated by this coin and always disagreed with every interpretation I’ve heard of it, but I think you’re on to something, Liv, by noting the direction in which they’re running — it demonstrates coordination on the part of the Romans. Note also how the cover depicts both women facing the ground. The face up depiction at least gives the woman an opportunity to plead her case with her captor…

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