Honour, Love and Truth, an Alternative Reading of Titian's Sacred and Profane Love
Titian's Sacred and Profane Love (c. 1515) was apparently commissioned on the occasion of the marriage of Nicolo Aurelio and Laura Bagarotto in 1514. The idea that it contrasts two allegorized concepts of beauty or of love dates from the 18th century. Biographical considerations suggest that the clothed Venus depicts Laura Bagarotto and the naked Venus represents Truth. A conjectural case is made for the picture containing a coded message of the innocence of Laura's father, Bertuccio (executed in 1509).