In the center, on a higher position, is Venus, symbol of the highest love, overlooking the scene around, and above her head Cupid, her son, flies and targets his arrow to the centre od the dancing group. To the left of Venus are the three Graces, dancing. On the far left is Mercury, the messenger of the gods with wings at his feet, who with his Caduceus dispels the clouds to keep an eternal spring.
The "Primavera", Sandro Botticelli
The scenario of the painting is a grove of orange and other fruit trees, a blue sky in the background, and in the foreground a lawn of hundreds of different plants and flowers. Nine characters are represented, revolving around a central character, a lady with a red mantle. The true meaning of the painting is still rather obscure, and various reading levels have been identified in the centuries: a widely shared mythological reading, a philosophical one linked to the Platonic Academy, and a historical-dynastic level linked to the Medici family and Florence.
The Mythological Interpretation
The Philosophical Interpretation
The Historical Interpretation
But the central Grace might also be Simonetta Cattaneo (Fezzano, January 1453 - Florence, 26 April 1476), the wife of Marco Vespucci, loved by Giuliano de' Medici, and considered by his contemporaries the most beautiful woman alive, who was Sandro Botticelli's model for the "Birth of Venus" and other paintings. Among other things, the painter asked to be buried in the church of Ognissanti, Florence, at the feet of Simonetta, who died of consumption at the age of 23.