Scene VIII: Colloquy at Bithynia

Venus Anh Scene VIII.jpg


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Scene VIII: Colloquy at Bithynia

111 BC





The scene in the poem:


"If you desire

To thrash a slave,

Tell of your anger first to me." – Mother Anh


In Scene VIII we see Mother Anh’s nurturing qualities and leadership skills emerging as she begins talking with her slave master about his occasional rough treatment of slaves. Master Elpidius initially dismisses her advice, but later softens his approach according to her requests and achieves better productivity in his workshop. Mother Anh solidifies her role as a quiet, behind-the-scenes influencer who helps stabilise her new Bithynian “family”.





The image: Mother Anh peers up at Master Elpidius while imploring him to treat his slaves with more compassion. The setting of their discussion in a quiet wooded area of Bithynia provides a balanced and pleasing composition, which contrasts with the tension obvious on the faces of both characters. It is telling in this scene of the story that Master Elpidius, with his obvious dominance in terms of his authority and physical size, yields to the influence of his slave, a wise and caring Mother Anh. This image was taken in the village of Tassara in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy. 


ML Sund