Yesterday, I listed some of the tragic heroines from Greek myth who inspired popular works of art in the Nineteenth century. Today, let’s visit the dark side, and take a look at some femmes fatales, or dangerous women, from myth and legend. Again, I am going to keep with the theme of ancient Greece. So these women can be found causing mischief and mayhem in literature such as Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey, as well as the plays of the Greek tragedians.
The book Olympian Dreamers features a fairly exclusive group, consisting of three figures: Cassandra, Circe, and Helen of Troy. These dangerous women are contrasted with the female “monsters” of myth - Medea and Clytemnestra, both of whom committed crimes so heinous that Victorian painters shied away from depicting them overtly in their works.