This winged goddess, Aneya, is delivering a newly reborn phoenix to Helios. She also makes an exciting jigsaw puzzle.
The ancient Greeks believed the phoenix to be a bird of ancient lineage that was reborn from the ashes of its predecessor in a cycle that is repeated every five centuries. Some stories say the bird dies in a show of flames before being reborn, and most of these stories claim that the phoenix lives for 500 hundred years before its rebirth.
More about the Phoenix
Herodotus, the ancient Greek historian, wrote this report about the phoenix: “[The Egyptians] have also another sacred bird called the phoenix which I myself have never seen, except in pictures. Indeed, it is a great rarity, even in Egypt, only coming there (according to the accounts of the people of Heliopolis) once in five hundred years, when the old phoenix dies. Its size and appearance, if it is like the pictures, are as follows: the plumage is partly red, partly golden, while the general make and size are almost exactly that of the eagle. They tell a story of what this bird does, which does not seem to me to be credible: that he comes all the way from Arabia, and brings the parent bird, all plastered over with myrrh, to the temple of the Sun, and there buries the body. In order to bring him, they say, he first forms a ball of myrrh as big as he finds that he can carry; then he hollows out the ball and puts his parent inside, after which he covers over the opening with fresh myrrh, and the ball is then of exactly the same weight as at first; so he brings it to Egypt, plastered over as I have said, and deposits it in the temple of the Sun.”
Stories of the phoenix even inspired the great bard who used the phoenix as a metaphor in his play Henry VIII:
...Nor shall this peace sleep with her; but as when
The bird of wonder dies, the maiden phoenix,
Her ashes new create another heir
As great in admiration as herself;
So shall she leave her blessedness to one,
When heaven shall call her from this cloud of darkness,
Who from the sacred ashes of her honour
Shall star-like rise as great in fame as she was,
And so stand fix'd...
About Artist Boris Vallejo
Born in Lima, Peru, Boris attended the National School of Fine Arts in his native country before immigrating to the United States in 1964. He has since done a great volume of work for the Fantasy field, having worked for virtually every major publishing house with a science fiction or fantasy line. Boris has also illustrated for album covers, video box art and motion picture advertising. His mastery of oil painting is immediately and abundantly clear to anyone who looks at his work, and his classic sense is as much an “homage” to the old masters as it is to anyone contemporaneously working in the Fantasy genre. Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell married in 1994 and share their lives and their studio in Pennsylvania.
Puzzle | 1,000 Pieces | Size: 19 by 26 inches