The Pyramus and Thisbe Mirrors

In All by Mark Evans

Pyramus Mirror
Thisbe Mirror

The Pyramus and Thisbe mirrors are constructed using orphaned sconces that I repurposed into these two jewel- like mirrors. Thisbe is silver and Pyramus is gold. Each are gilded then layers of Venetian glass rods are thickly applied. The “mirror” is actually a cabochon backed with a mirror….The “mirror with no reflection”.

Each is 12 inches long. They are presently in my studio awaiting being shipped to one of my showrooms.

In Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Pyramus and Thisbe are two lovers in the city of Babylon who occupy connected houses, forbidden by their parents to be wed, because of their parents’ rivalry. Through a crack in one of the walls, they whisper their love for each other (according to some sources, e.g. Penguin Classics, there is mentioned that the Babylonian Queen made a wall between the two estates and during the construction of the wall, a tiny hole was left). They arrange to meet near Ninus’s tomb under a mulberry tree and state their feelings for each other. Thisbe arrives first, but upon seeing a lioness with a mouth bloody from a recent kill, she flees, leaving behind her cloak. When Pyramus arrives, he is horrified at the sight of Thisbe’s cloak which the lioness had torn and left traces of blood behind, as well as its tracks. Assuming that a wild beast has killed her, Pyramus kills himself, falling on his sword, a typical Babylonian way to commit suicide, and in turn splashing blood on the white mulberry leaves. Pyramus’s blood stains the white mulberry fruits, turning them dark. Thisbe returns, eager to tell Pyramus what had happened to her, but she finds Pyramus’s dead body under the shade of the mulberry tree. Thisbe, after a brief period of mourning, stabs herself with the same sword. In the end, the gods listen to Thisbe’s lament, and forever change the color of the mulberry fruits into the stained color to honor their forbidden love. Pyramus and Thisbe proved to be faithful lovers to each other until the very end.

Thank you Wikipedia for the above. Couldn’t say it better!

This story has been used many times over the centuries from Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet to The Fantasticks( a musical that played forever off Broadway).

This Vanity Fair cartoon blames Democratic President James Buchanan for the 1860 split of the Democratic party into Northern and Southern factions, with each running rival presidential candidates, Stephen Douglas and John Breckinridge, respectively. The cartoonist depicts Douglas as the male Pyramus, Breckinridge as the female Thisbe, and Buchanan as the wall keeping them apart. 
Thisbe by John William Waterhouse, 1909
Fresco of Pyramus and Thisbe from the House of Loreius Tiburtinus, Pompeii