A 16th century German painting of Salomé holding a platter with the head of John the Baptist. Painted by Lucas Cranach the Elder in 1530.
Notice how both characters are looking at the spectator. Salome is appropriately dressed as a noble woman (though typically anachronistically so). And John is opening his mouth as well as his eyes. In ecstasy? Or to allow his last breath to escape?
I guess since his neck is “open”, he might as well open all orifices he has left.
The platter seems like an oversized common kitchen plate. I wonder if anyone ever made the association with food when Salome requests the head on a platter. Like the spider eating its mate. And instead of saying “I have kissed thy mouth, Jokanaan”, she’d say “And I will eat you!”.
Little Red Ridinghood popping up again? What’s up with that?
She is holding him like a lover, not like a dish. And the red of her mouth easily leads the eye to the red on his neck. It’s cute how they look at us. Like a couple caught doing something they didn’t want others to witness.
She has an awfully large necklace. I wonder if she fears decapitation herself…