The Jewish heroine Judith holds the head of the enemy Assyrian commander, Holofernes, who she
has just decapitated in his drunken sleep. This painting is one of numerous copies after Allori’s celebrated image, in which the head of Holofernes is reputedly a self-portrait and the figure of Judith a portrait of ‘La Mazzafirra,’ the woman who was the focus of the artist’s unrequited love. The original painting is in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.


  • Title: Judith with the Head of Holofernes
  • Date: 17th century
  • Physical Dimensions: w242 x h305 cm
  • Type: Painting
  • Medium: Oil
  • Work Nationality: Italian
  • Support: Copper
  • Provenance: London, Sir Francis Bourgeois, 1811; Bourgeois Bequest, 1811.
  • Further Information: Cristofano Allori (1577-1621) was an Italian portrait painter of the late Florentine Mannerist school. His most famous work is Judith with the Head of Holofernes. He made at least two versions of this work and several copies were made.
  • After: Allori, Cristofano
  • Acquisition Method: Bourgeois, Sir Peter Francis (Bequest, 1811)

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