Mirror with Athena (left) and Ajax about to commit suicide

Italic, Etruscan
Classical Period
380–360 B.C.


Catalogue Raisonné

Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 381; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 123 (additional published references).

Dimensions

Diameter: 15.2 cm (6 in.)

Accession Number

99.494

Medium or Technique

Bronze

On View

Krupp Gallery (Gallery 215A)

Collections

The Ancient World

Classifications

Cosmetic and medical

Engraved and inscribed tang mirror

On the reverse of the mirror is a border of leaf clusters, possibly olive or laurel. On the medallion is Minerva (Athena). She wears a crested helmet, aegis and peplos, and is standing with spear vertically in her left hand. She gestures to the other figure. At the right, is a partly nude, bearded man identified by the inscription as Telamonian Ajax. He kneels in cloak and scabbard and is about to plunge a sword into his stomach.
Lyre-form volutes below.

Patina green and lustrous.

Inscription

Inscriptions identify Minerva and Telamonian Ajax

Provenance

By 1897: with E. P. Warren (according to Warren's records: Bought in Rome.1897 apparently); purchased by MFA from E. P. Warren, 1899, for $ 32,500.00 (this is the total price for MFA 99.338-99.542)

Credit Line

Henry Lillie Pierce Fund