The Triumph of Achilles: Achilles dragging the dead body of Hector in front of the gates of Troy

Explore the magnificence of the masterpiece painting, The Triumph of Achilles, housed in the spectacular Achilleion Palace in Corfu. Discover the vivid details, rich symbolism, and the captivating story of Achilles depicted in this extraordinary work of art. A must-read for art and history enthusiasts.

Corfu’s Achilleion Palace is a sight to behold for anyone interested in stunning architecture or the stories of Greek mythology. Among its many highlights is a breathtaking painting by Franz Matsch that depicts the return of Achilles with the body of Hector after the Trojan War. While the painting itself is worth a visit to the palace, the rumours surrounding the artist’s mysterious death only add to its intrigue.

The Significance of the Painting:

Matsch’s painting captures the moment of The Triumph of Achilles and the aftermath of Hector’s death. Art historians have noted several artistic elements in the painting that make it stand out, including the depiction of Apollo, who holds Hector’s body, as a symbol of the ancient Greek belief in the god’s role as a protector of the dead.

Additionally, Sissy Elizabeth, the empress who commissioned the painting, focused on Achilles’ youthful beauty in the piece. Matsch also used shadow and light to give the illusion of motion that makes the horse in the painting appear to leap off it.

Franz Matsch and His Tragic Fate:

The mystery surrounding Matsch’s death is as intriguing as his painting the Triumph of Achille. A prominent Viennese artist, Matsch’s work was highly respected in his time. However, the truth about his death remains unknown. Some people speculate that he met his demise while working in the Achilleion Palace, possibly falling from a high spot while painting.

Others believe that he suffered from grief and mental illness following the death of his wife. A third theory – that Matsch was the victim of a plot by his rivals in the Viennese art world – adds another layer of mystery to the story.


Despite the uncertain circumstances of Matsch’s departure, his painting at the Achilleion Palace remains an enduring testimony to his talent and to the stories of Greek mythology that continue to fascinate people to this day. The palace is an incredible example of neoclassical architecture, and the beauty of the artwork inside showcases the creativity and skill of artists like Matsch. Without a doubt, anyone with an interest in history, art, and Greek mythology will be captivated by the Achilleion Palace.