The Face of Beatrice Cenci is created

Guido Reni paints The Face of Beatrice Cenci- although this credit is sometimes contested. Beatrice was a young noblewoman who died in 1599. The cause of death was execution, as she was found guilty for the murder of her father. The trial preceding the execution was a hot topic in the 16th century, as the details of Beatrice's abuse at the hands of Count Francesco Cenci led many to question whether she deserved her sentence. Beatrice was executed alongside her stepmother and two of her siblings, but became immortalized by the people who saw her as a symbol of resistance to the aristocracy. Portrait of Beatrice Cenci became known for its moving qualities, as many who saw it were very moved by her expression. The painting inspired many different interpretations of both the real-life Beatrice as well as the circumstances surrounding the creation of the portrait. Notably, her pitiable story as well as the serene and innocent visage in the portrait may have led some to believe that the painting proved Beatrice's innocence. 

Associated Place(s)

Event date:

circa. 1662