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The ancient poet Ovid recounts how Latona, the mother of the twin mythological deities Apollo and Diana, turned a group of inhospitable peasants into frogs. They had stirred up the mud at the bottom of a pond to prevent Latona from drinking from it. The scene takes place in Lycia, a region in Asia Minor (now Turkey but then under Roman rule). König made many miniature pictures for collectors. He often painted on copper, a smooth and luminous surface that allowed for fine detail. This painting copies a composition by the German artist Adam Elsheimer, one of the greatest small-scale painters of his day.

The Courtauld, London (Samuel Courtauld Trust)



Latona Changing the Lycian Peasants into Frogs




oil on copper


H 18.5 x W 25.4 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

Princes Gate bequest, 1978

Work type



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The Courtauld, London (Samuel Courtauld Trust)

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