Alphonse Maria Mucha (1860 - 1939) was a Czech Art Nouveau painter. However, he did a great many posters and prints. The period of his work has become known as the Belle Epoque. Mucha created expressly for the L'Estampe Moderne, a monthly portfolio of four lithographs issued between 1897 and 1899. His rendering of Salome presents the legendary temptress as a Byzantine gypsy-diaphanous apparel, raven tresses hung with rings, plucking an ancient stringed instrument, no doubt to accompany herself in the Dance of the Seven Veils. "In Christian mythology, Salome was the daughter of Herodias and stepdaughter of Herod Antipas, ruler of Galilee in Palestine. Her infamy comes from causing St. John the Baptist's execution. The saint had condemned the marriage of Herodias and Herod Antipas, as Herodias was the divorced wife of Antipas's half brother Philip. Incensed, Herod imprisoned John, but feared to have the well-known prophet killed. Herodias, however, was not mollified by John's incarceration and pressed her daughter Salome to "seduce" her stepfather Herod with a dance, making him promise to give her whatever she wished. At her mother's behest, Salome thus asked for the head of John the Baptist on a platter. Unwillingly, Herod did her bidding, and Salome brought the platter to her mother.