Salome, Daughter of Herodias


Lucas Cranach

“And when the daughter of the said Herodias came in, and danced, and pleased Herod and them that sat with him, the king said unto the damsel, Ask of me whatsoever thou wilt, and I will give it thee. And he swore unto her, Whatsoever thou shalt ask of me, I will give it thee, unto the half of my kingdom. And she went forth, and said unto her mother, What shall I ask? And she said, The head of John the Baptist.” MARK 6:22-25

Salome is not mentioned by name in the bible, other than as “the Daughter of Herodias.” The lurid, even by biblical standards, tale of a teenage girl dancing for her uncle/stepfather and demanding the head of a prophet in recompense for slander against her mother, has sparked the art of sublimation for centuries. It is Josephus who gives us her name, Salome:

“Herodias was married to Herod, the son of Herod the Great by Mariamme the daughter of Simon the high priest. They had a daughter Salome, after birth Herodias, taking it into her head to flout the way of our fathers, married Herod the Tetrarch, her husband’s brother by the same father, who was tetrarch of Galilee; to do this she parted from a living husband.” — Antiquities 18.5.3 136 Josephus, 60 C.E.


Lucas Cranach the Elder: Salome

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Salome
Lucas Cranach c. 1530
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Salome
Lucas Cranach
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Salome
Lucas Cranach
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Salome with the Head of St John the Baptist
Lucas Cranach