Mr. and Mrs. Charles G. Prasse Collection 1966.172
Catalogue raisonné: Hollstein II.139.237
Although the scene is enigmatic, presumably the witch has worked her magic through the physical power of the horse, who rendered the groom unconscious and now glowers at him. Representations of witchcraft were common during the early 16th century, a period of emerging moral reform and religious fervor. Baldung seemed to be obsessed with the evil power of female sexuality: representations of women with sinister or malicious connotations and their association with vulnerability and death are features of his work. Since Baldung's coat of arms appears on the wall behind the groom, who also bears some facial resemblance to portraits of the artist, some autobiographical reference may have been intended. Bewitched Groom presents a pessimistic view of man—or perhaps Baldung himself—who cannot resist the superior and evil forces of nature. The inevitability of physical passion, and its connection with the frailty of human nature, is a recurring theme in the artist's work.
The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.
All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.