This sensuous statuette shares affinities in style and subject with a bronze nude female figure that pierces her bosom with a dagger as she twists and turns. Known in at least three versions, in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and the Bayerisches Nationalmuseum, Munich, that model of Dido is similarly characterized by a small head with distinctive features and fluid modeling. The model for that bronze, formerly ascribed to an anonymous Flemish artist working in 17th century Rome under the influence of Bernini, has been variously attributed to Ferdinando Tacca (1619-1686) on stylistic grounds.
Dido, the founder and Queen of Carthage (modern-day Tunisia), fell in love with Aeneas, the Trojan hero. She failed to persuade Aeneas to remain with her and when he eventually sailed away with the Trojan ships, Dido plunged Aeneas' sword into her breast.