• Explore a cross-section of Greek works that highlight Gods and Goddesses from Greek mythology, including vases, sculpture, and jewelry, from the 6th century B.C. to the 3rd century A.D.

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  • Roundel with Apollo

    Greek
    Hellenistic Period
    150–100 B.C.

    Description

    Roundel, with head of Apollo in relief. Surface gilded, eyes once inlaid. Apollo appears as a musician, a corner of his lyre visible over his left shoulder. There is a laurel wreath on his wavy hair. Tresses fall over his shoulders. The border of the roundel is an encircling wreath of laurel leaves with beading on the inner edge. Some pitting and darkening of gilding; part of background missing and broken; relief portions complete and in excellent condition.
    The roundel probably served as a phalera (an ornament of a horse’s headstall).

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Robert E. Hecht, Jr.; purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., June 26, 1985

    Credit Line

    Theodora Wilbour Fund in memory of Zoë Wilbour

    Details

    Dimensions

    Diameter: 7 cm (2 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    1985.333

    Medium or Technique

    Silver gilt, eyes originally inlaid in another material

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Amulet with Demeter, Harpokrates/Triptolemos, and Persephone

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    3rd century A.D.

    Place of Manufacture: Probably Egypt

    Description

    At the left stands Demeter, goddess of grain, as shown in Egypt, with a tall torch and a veiled head surmounted by a grain basket. At the right is her daughter Persephone, queen of the Underworld, holding a scepter and with two ears of grain emerging from her head. Between them is an adolescent wearing the cloak of Greek travelers and soldiers (chlamys) and the crown of Upper and Lower Egypt. The crown marks the youth as the Egyptian god Harpokrates, son of Isis and Osiris/Serapis. The cloak, however, identifies the youth with the Greek hero Triptolemos, who was sent by Demeter to teach agriculture to the world.

    (entry from the Art of the Ancient Mediterranean World, no. 218)

    Loops attached to the back indicate that it was worn around the neck suspended on a chain. It is worked in repousse technique.

    Provenance

    By 1991: with Sotheby's, 1334 York Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10021 (Sotheby's auction, June 18, 1991, lot 197 [according to R. Keresey: from a New York Art Consortium-- now defunct]); by 1995: with Antiqua, Inc., 6320 Canoga Avenue, Suite 1770, Woodland Hills, California 91367 (Antiqua, Inc., Catalogue II, no. 66, pp. 32-33, illus.); May 21, 1997: purchased by MFA from Antiqua, Inc.

    Credit Line

    Benjamin and Lucy Rowland Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Height: 3.1 cm (1 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    1997.62

    Medium or Technique

    Gold

    On View

    Anne and Blake Ireland Gallery (Gallery 210A)

    Collections

    Jewelry, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Jewelry / Adornment, Pendants

    More Info
  • Stele depicting infant Herakles, Kastor, Polydeukes,Athena Alea, a war ship, and a proxeny decree

    Greek
    Early Hellenistic Period
    about 370–367 B.C.

    Description

    A carved stele in the shape of a pedimented rectangular block with a series of relief panels and a proxeny decree of great significance to Boiotian/Theban history. There are four sections: at the top is the infant Herakles (who was born at Thebes in Boiotia, strangling snakes. In the middle zone, are the divine horsemen Kastor and Polydeukes (representatives of Sparta?) and patrons of travelers, and Athena Alea, a goddess of the Peloponnesos. In the third zone is a warship equipped with a three-pronged ram at its prow, two runs of heavy wales, and stanchions at the level of the rail indicating either rower stations or support for a deck above; the lack of oars and sails suggests the ship is at rest.

    The text declares that Timeas, a man of Laconia (in the southern Peloponnesos), will look after Boiotian interests there, for which he is granted privileges in Boiotia.
    Partial diplomatic text broken off beneath ship.

    Inscribed: (Greek inscription to be added) “Polydeukes, Castor, Athena Alea
    God. Resolved by the people. Ergoteles was archon, Ismeinias proposed. Let Timea [s] son of Cheirikrates the Lakonian be pro[xenos] and benefacto[r of the Boi] tians, both him and his descen [dants] and let him have the right to (purchase) land a[nd a house.]

    Rare example of a Boiotian public document accompanied by a sculpted relief. Important document demonstrating ship building campaign of Boiotians in period when Thebans and Spartans were hostile.

    Scientific Analysis:

    University of South Florida Lab No. 8415: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.3 / delta18O +0.1,

    Attribution - possibly from Lakonia. Justification - fine grain, C and O isotopes, similar to Gourani quarry, perirhanteria, capital from Olympia in Berlin.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: George Ortiz Collection, Geneva (said to have come from a German dealer and to be from Thebes); 1986: acquired from George Ortiz by Robin Symes, Limited, 3 Ormond Yard, Duke of York Street, St. James's, London SW 1; purchased by MFA from Robin Symes, Limited, June 24, 1987

    Credit Line

    John H. and Ernestine A. Payne Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 016.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 65 x 32.5 x 20cm (25 9/16 x 12 13/16 x 7 7/8in.)

    Accession Number

    1987.297

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, possibly from Lakonia, southern Greece

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Centaur

    Greek
    Hellenistic Period
    about 210–170 B.C.

    Description

    Centaur with arms tied. Forelegs, hindlegs, and tail broken off. Surface slightly pitted. Brown patina.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Robert E. Hecht, Jr. (according to entry 66 in Greek, Etruscan & Roman Bronzes: found in Asia Minor); gift of Robert E. Hecht to MFA, June 19, 1963

    Credit Line

    Gift of Robert E. Hecht, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 066; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 119 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height x length: 4.2 x 5 cm (1 5/8 x 1 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    63.1039

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Demeter–Io–Isis

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    A.D. 160–200

    Place of Manufacture: Egypt (probably)

    Description

    Demeter wears a mantle covering her head and wrapped tightly over her dress. In her left hand are two ears of wheat and a pomegranate, and on her head is a grain basket embellished with a sun disc. With her right hand she originally supported a tall torch, which was set into pin holes on the sculpture’s base. The arm and torch were replaced in antiquity, making use of an iron clamp behind the shoulder. Right arm now missing from shoulder.
    Two small horns emerging from her forehead make it clear that she was also the goddess Io, who was turned into a cow and wandered to Egypt. There she was returned to human form. Io was identified by the Greeks with the Egyptian goddess Isis.
    Scientific Analysis:
    Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Diffraction and determined to be Dolomitic.
    Harvard Lab No. HI365: Isotope ratios - delta13C +3.95 / delta18O -4.59, Attribution - Thasos-Cape Vathy, Justification - Dolomitic by XRD.

    Provenance

    By 1970: Paul E. Manheim Collection (seemingly from Rome); gift of Paul E. Manheim to MFA, March 11, 1970

    Credit Line

    Gift of Paul E. Manheim

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 189; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 81 cm (31 7/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.242

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Dolomitic from the Greek Island of Thasos

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Mixing bowl (column krater)

    Greek
    Early Classical Period
    about 470 B.C.
    Painter the Aegisthus Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Side A: A daughter of aged Pelias leads him to the cauldron in which Medea boils a ram, restoring its youth. Medea stands at the right of the cauldron. Greek inscription on the cauldron “Kalos” (KALOS).
    Side B: Two naked youths, the one on the left with cloak and wineskin. Greek inscription on the wineskin?

    Inscription

    Side A: ΚΑLΟS on the cauldron Side B: inscription?

    Provenance

    By 1969, Robert E. Hecht, Jr., Boston; 1970, sold by Robert Hecht to the MFA. (Accession Date: December 16, 1970) NOTE: According to Hecht, he he had purchased the vase in Munich from Prince Wohlmut von Eisenstein, whose family had owned it since 1740. This information has not been verified.

    Credit Line

    Edward J. and Mary S. Holmes Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Overall: 37.5 x x 33 x 38.5 cm (14 3/4 x 13 x 15 3/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.567

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Bucket (situla)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 350–340 B.C.
    the Varrese Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    Situla (type 2)
    A: Dionysos is seated on a rock or outcropping suggested by a row of white dots; similar dots indicate the terrain throughout this scene and the one on the reverse. Two maenads stand on either side of the god, while at the right a nude satyr has fallen asleep against a marble louterion. Dionysos is seated to the right but turns to look at the maenad at the left, who holds a phiale in her left hand and a pair of yellow and white fillets in her right. The god’s legs are covered by his himation, which has fallen about his waist to reveal the upper body. His face, drawn in three-quarter view, is framed by long curly hair and a thick white fillet, loosely tied at the temples and decorated with yellow dots. With his left hand he rests his thyrsos on his lap and with his right holds out his kantharos, its handles foreshortened, its body tinted gold over the added white. A drip of glaze has run down the god’s right leg.
    The maenad at the left wears a short mantle over a chiton, the hem and central panel of which are decorated with crosshatching and white dots. Her hair is tied in back into a tall chignon; the shoes, bracelets, earrings, necklace, and radiate stephane are rendered with added white. A dotted fillet hangs behind her at the left. The maenad at the right leans on the louterion with her left arm, her left foot drawn up; she too wears white earrings, necklace, and bracelets. The chiton beneath her himation is plain, without crosshatching. Her hair is pulled back over a white fillet, which has a small finial in front. In her left hand she holds a thyrsos; with her right she extends toward Dionysos a jug of wine, the fluting of its white body drawn with dilute glaze. On the ground before her is a phiale; farther left lies a tympanum.
    The sleeping satyr props his head against the louterion with his right arm, his back padded by a himation. Only the context and the thyrsos leaning against his leg identify him as a satyr, since the ears and tail are not visible. The face and body are rendered in three-quarter view. A realistic touch is the coarse black hair covering the chest and belly. He wears white boots and a fillet identical to that of Dionysos; the kantharos about to slip from his limp fingers is also the same. The louterion is drawn with added white, and with the flutes of the stand and other details in dilute glaze. In the background, arching over the three right-hand figures like a trellis, is a grapevine tinted with yellow and white.
    B: In this more standardized scene, Dionysos is seated between two standing maenads; the satyr is gone and so is the grapevine. The god is seated to the left, a phiale in his right hand and a thyrsos held against his left shoulder. He is seated on a himation, which lies across his lap without covering the genitals. Added white is used for the thyrsos and for the wreath of ivy on his head. The maenad facing him at the left turns toward him, a wreath in the raised left hand, a situla in the lowered right. She is jeweled and draped like the left-hand maenad on side A, but her chiton is plainer and she wears a kekryphalos. The maenad at the right, with shorter hair, wears a belted chiton without himation; shoes, necklace, earrings, and bracelets are in added white. The white dot on her forehead may indicate a fillet. A garland of white-petaled flowers hangs from her right hand, and in her left arm she cradles a branch with a pendant fillet. Floating in the upper field are a pair of rosettes, a cloth fillet, and two white fillets like those worn by Dionysos and the satyr on side A.
    Below the faux handles on either side are two large, enclosed palmettes, their tips touching in the center, flanked by smaller, unenclosed palmettes and tendrils. The band circling the lower body consists of groups of three stopt maeanders to right, alternating with saltire-squares. Around the middle of the rim is a band of dotted egg-pattern. The interior is glazed.
    According to Trendall and Cambitoglou (RVAp, I, p. 343), “this vase goes very closely in style with no. 34 [a nestoris in a Kiel private collection], and, like it, must be accounted one of the Varrese Painter’s better works.” Schauenburg compares the shape, ornament, and general style of another situla by the painter, Kiel B 776 (RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 89, no. 12/35a), which also has a grapevine over the main scene; see Schauenburg Jdl 106 (1991), pp. 184-185, pl. 36, 1-3. The chiton of the female flute player on the Kiel situla has crosshatched decoration like that of the Boston maenad, as does the chiton of Helen on catalogue no. 28; compare also the peplos of Hippodameia on British Museum F 331 (RVAp,I , p. 338, no. 13/5, pl. 109,2). The situlae of the Group of the Dublin Situlae are not far removed in shape and style. For an example, see Galerie Günter Puhze, “Kunst der Antike”, Katalog 9 (Freiburg im Breisgau, 1991),no. 229; RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 105, no. 15/35b.
    For South Italian situlae, see K. Schauenburg, “Meded” 43 (1981), pp. 83-89; idem, RM 88 (1981), pp. 107-116; idem, AA 1981, pp. 462-488; and A. D. Trendall, “NumAntCl” 19 (1990), pp. 117-134, particularly p. 119 and the bibliography on p. 127. For bronze and silver situale of this type, see B. Barr-Sharrar, in Barr-Sharrar and Borza, “Macedonia and Greece,” pp. 127-130.
    (text from Vase-Painting In Italy, catalogue entry no. 37)

    Provenance

    By 1978: Los Angeles market, Summa Galleries inv. 71 (according to A. D. Trendall and A. Cambitoglou, The Red-Figured Vases of Apulia, vol. 1: Early and Middle Apulian [1978], p. 343, no. 35, pl. 111, 2-4); by 1990: with Atlantis Antiquities, 40 East 69th Street, New York and Hesperia Arts Auction, Ltd., 29 West 57th Street, New York; sold at Hesperia Arts Auction, Ltd., Park Lane Hotel, 36 Central Park South, New York, November 27, 1990, part 2, lot 35; by 1992: with Acanthus, 24 East 81st Street, New York 10028; purchased by MFA from Acanthus, June 24, 1992

    Credit Line

    Museum purchase with funds by exchange from a Gift of Horace L. Mayer and Paul E. Manheim and the Helen and Alice Colburn Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 037.

    Dimensions

    Height (max.): 28.1 cm

    Accession Number

    1992.317

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Statue of Athena Parthenos (the Virgin Goddess)

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    2nd or 3rd century A.D.

    Description

    Roman-period replica of the cult statue that once stood within the Parthenon on the Athenian Acropolis, a chryselephantine (gold and ivory) colossal statue designed by the master sculptor Phidias and . dedicated in 438 B.C. The goddess wears a helmet on which are remains of Pegasoi on either side flanking a sphinx of which only the paws remain; above the visor are parts of protomes, probably deer; griffins in relief on the cheek pieces. Curls frame the face, tresses fall on her shoulders. Gorgon on aegis which is edged by snakes; snakes encircle her waist forming knot at the center.

    Condition:
    The head and neck were carved of a lighter marble than the rest of the figure. Joins are confirmed by matching curls above the left shoulder and the hair below the helmet and on back of aegis. Restored areas include a small part of the left eyelid, tip of the nose and left nostril, much of the lower lip and the end of the chin, and the curl of hair on the right side of her neck, including a small portion of the curved lower end of the helmet. There are no restorations on the body. Traces of paint remain on the lower curls on Athena’s left shoulder. Ancient iron pegs are visible in the troughs of the arms, along with larger dowel holes for fitting the arms and the weight they supported. Some surfaces were carefully cleaned long ago; others preserve good root marks.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI752: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.76 / delta18O -8.63, Attribution - Pentelikon, Justification - Sparkling, fine grained marble.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: private collection in Germany; by 1980: with ANTIKEN/H. Herzer and Co., Promenadeplatz 13, 8000 Munich 2; purchased by MFA from Heinz Herzer, April 16, 1980

    Credit Line

    Classical Department Exchange Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 019; Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 040.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 154 cm, 232.7 kg (60 5/8 in., 513 lb.) Stone (Dry mounted recessed 3 3/8" deep into Concrete base): 69.9 x 55.9 x 51.4 cm (27 1/2 x 22 x 20 1/4 in.) Mount (Concrete base dry mounted onto wooden pallet): 22.9 x 105.4 x 89.5 cm (9 x 41 1/2 x 35 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    1980.196

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens

    On View

    Classical Roman Gallery (Gallery 213)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Cupid (Eros)

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 190

    Description

    The under life-size winged Cupid, of the Centocelle type, stands with his weight on his left leg with his hip cocked to his left; his right leg is advanced and his right shoulder is raised slightly above the other shoulder. He gazes down towards his right. The cascades of long curls that fall on his shoulder and the large wings affixed to his back are intricately carved and contrast with the polished smoothness of his face and lean torso. Toned body of a youth without well defined musculature. Remnants of a quiver visible hanging on the tree trunk behind the figure.

    Condition: Breaks along the upper left arm, lower right arm along the wrist, both legs near the knees, genitalia, right wing, and lower half of the tree trunk support. Remains of struts are visible on the left thigh, left hip, possibly at the top of the right knee, and between the right wrist and hip. The right hand was made separately and joined with an iron dowel, which remains in the center of the wrist. Traces of a yellow patina. Iron stains along the right wrist.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI244: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.51 / delta18O -3.08, Attribution - Aphrodisias 2, Paros 2, Prokonnesos, Thasos-Cape Phaneri & Thasos-Aliki, Usak, Mylasa, Naxos-Melanes, Justification - Grayish, coarse grained marble.


    The youthful god of love, Cupid (or Eros, as the Greeks called him) stands pensively, head lowered and arms at his sides. This is one of more than twenty similar marbles thought to reproduce a common prototype. It may in turn have been modeled on an earlier Greek masterwork—perhaps a bronze by the renowned Athenian sculptor Praxiteles. For the Greeks, statues of Eros served primarily as dedications at religious sanctuaries, but Romans thought images of the playful love-god a suitable decoration for opulent residences.

    Provenance

    Date unknown: said to have been found at Laodiceia ad Mare in Syria according to RDAC 1988, pt. 2, p. 141; by 1979: with Münzen und Medaillen A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel, Switzerland (shown at Schweizerische Kunst-und Antiquitätenmesse 1979, Basel, 24 March through 3 April); purchased by MFA from Münzen und Medaillen A.G., October 17, 1979

    Credit Line

    Classical Department Exchange Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 020.

    Dimensions

    Height: 63 cm (24 13/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1979.477

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, probably from the Greek island of Paros

    On View

    Greek & Roman Sculpture Gallery (Gallery 211)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Head of Herakles (Alexander the Great?)

    Greek
    Early Hellenistic Period
    late 4th century B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Sparta, Laconia, Greece

    Description

    The head appears to have come from a statue, but it could have been part of a figure carved almost in the round against a background, in an architectural niche. The head is broken off diagonally in such a way as to leave the face and the edge of the surrounding lion’s skin preserved at the sides. The left front of the animal’s muzzle has been further damaged, and the tip of Herakles’s nose has also suffered. There is considerable incrustation on the right side of the face.
    Images of the young, beardless Herakles became popular in the fourth century B.C.; the hero is identifiable by the skin of the Nemean lion, which he killed as one of his first labors. Alexander the Great used heads of the youthful Herakles on his silver coinage, and these images soon became identified as Alexander himself. The sensitivity and the youthful freshness of this sculpture have long caused it to be identified as a portrait of Alexander, whose uninterrupted chain of conquests amply justified a comparison with Herakles’ mythological exploits.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Professor W. Romaine Newbold Collection (said to have been found by him at Sparta by 1908, according to Worcester Art Museum Annual, 1936-1937, p. 9); by 1910: Mrs. John Newbold Hazard Collection; loaned by Mrs. John Newbold Hazard to MFA, June 4,1910 (returned to Mrs. Hazard, June 29, 1911 and later on loan to Worcester Art Museum); by 1927: Mrs. D. H. Reese Collection (loaned to MFA, April 14,1950); purchased by MFA from Mrs. D. H. Reese, December 11, 1952, for $ 6,000.00

    Credit Line

    Otis Norcross Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 126; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 110 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 24 cm (9 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    52.1741

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Figurine of seated Aphrodite

    Greek, East Greek
    Late Archaic Period
    490–480 B.C.

    Findspot: Assos (Behramkale), Troas, Anatolia (Turkey)

    Description

    Figurine of Aphrodite seated on a throne. Head missing. Compare 84.416, which is larger and more complete.

    Provenance

    From Assos (Behramkale, Turkey); sarcophagus No. 87. 188?: excavated by the Archaeological Institute of America; gift of the Archaeological Institute of America to MFA, January 15, 1884.

    Credit Line

    Gift of the Archaeological Institute of America

    Details

    Dimensions

    6.3 cm (2 1/2 in.)

    Accession Number

    84.114

    Medium or Technique

    Terracotta; light gray clay

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Upper part of a grave stele: seated sphinx (sphinx and capital)

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 530 B.C.

    Description

    Sphinx and plinth were carved in island marble separately from the Pentelic marble capital. This plinth was let into a socket at the top of the capital and secured in a bed of molten lead. There is a large socket on the underside of the capital, with a pour hole from the back side. The abacus and the base of the capital are flush with the volutes, and all surfaces have been smoothed, except the plinth of the sphinx, which shows point or punch marks.
    The sphinx crouches to the right, with hind-quarters lifted and head turned to the front. The end of her curving tail rests on her right haunch. The hair, originally black, is shown as a mass descending to the shoulders and divided vertically and horizontally by grooves. The feathers of the wings are carved in relief and were painted alternately green, black, red, and blue. The feathers on the breast form a scale pattern, painted in alternate rows of red and green. The rib of each wing and the flat molding at the top of each foreleg are green.
    The capital is of lyre design, consisting of two double volutes, with palmettes in all the interstices. It is open in the center and richly decorated with incised and painted designs. The front and ends of the base are enriched with a delicately carved guilloche. The abacus has four-pointed stars set on three-petaled palmettes, three in front and one on each end. The outer sides of the volutes are incised and painted with a large lotus and palmette pattern. Alternating red and black colors complement the form, carving and incision.
    Sphinx and capital have been broken into a number of pieces and rejoined, with slight restorations at the joins. There is more restoration in the lower part of the capital than elsewhere, but this is to a great extent supplanted by an extra piece acquired nearly twenty years after the original purchase was first undertaken. The surfaces are very fresh. The fragments with the parts of the dedicatory inscription have the handsome golden yellow patina of the best Pentelic marble.

    See: 40.724a-b for inscribed fragments.

    See also Cls. Inv. 186.
    Nov. 2012: please note that Cls. Inv. 186 is actually 40.724b.

    Provenance

    Said to have been found in Vari, near Sounio, Greece [see note 1]. July 23, 1930, sold by Edward Zoumpoulakis (dealer), Athens, to Brummer Gallery, New York (stock no. P7165); 1940, sold by Brummer Gallery to the MFA for $65,000 [see note 2]. (Accession Date: October 10, 1940) NOTES: [1] According to the Brummer Gallery stock card. [2] Acquired with MFA accession nos. 40.724a and 40.724b.

    Credit Line

    1931 and 1939 Purchase Funds

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 017; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 106 (additional published references); Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 159.

    Dimensions

    Height: 141.7 cm (55 13/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    40.576

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, either island (sphinx and plinth) or Pentelic (capital)

    On View

    Greek Archaic Gallery (Gallery 113)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Jupiter (Zeus)

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    1st–2nd century A.D.

    Description

    This statuette of Zeus would have held a scepter-staff in his raised left hand. His thunderbolt served as a support for the lowered right hand. Left arm, left leg from just below the knee, and right foot are missing. The eyes have the remains of silver inlay. The rear half of the thunderbolt is preserved in the right hand. Brown patina with green spots.

    Provenance

    By 1965: with Mathias Komor, 19 East 71st Street, New York 21; purchased by MFA from Mathias Komor, April 14, 1965

    Credit Line

    Helen and Alice Colburn Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 121; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 120 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 8.5 cm (3 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    65.462

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

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  • Helmeted head of the god Mars (Ares)

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 135

    Place of Manufacture: Roman Empire (Asia Minor)

    Description

    Probably a copy after the colossal cult image in the temple of Ares at Halicarnassus, on the acropolis and once attributed to Leochares or Timotheos (Vitruvius, II, 8, 11) but like the Demeter of Knidos, certain “portraits” from the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, and the young Alexander the Great from the Athenian Acropolis, the image of Ares is to be identified with the former sculptor.
    Condition: A bit of the upper part of the neck is preserved. The nose is mostly broken away and the visor and plume of the helmet have been chipped. The head, particularly the skin areas of the face, was cleaned aggressively to remove a brown encrustation.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI245: Isotope ratios - delta13C +1.58 / delta18O -4.29, Attribution - Dokimeion, Justification - Fine grained marble.

    [Label text]:
    Variation of a Greek prototype of the fourth century B. C.
    The head is characterized as Ares, god of war, by his plumed helmet and his idealized features. Details of the helmet are somewhat misunderstood, since this type was no longer used in Roman times. The fringe of hair above his forehead shows a hint of Trajanic or Hadrianic fashion. It is difficult to say whether the statue from which the head comes was an interpretation, influenced by contemporary taste, of some nearby famous monument like Leochares’ Ares of Halicarnassus (modern Bodrum in southwest Asia Minor), or whether it was an idealized portrait of a Roman general with the attributes of the god.

    Provenance

    By 1977: with Mohammad Yeganeh, 75a Ridgmount Gardens, London, W.C.1 (according to his invoice of July 12, 1976: Provenience: allegedly near East); purchased by MFA from Mohammad Yeganeh, October 12, 1977

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III, by exchange

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 021.

    Dimensions

    Height: 44 cm (17 5/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1977.712

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Dokimeion (modern Afyon) in west-central Asia Minor

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  • Statuette of Aphrodite rising from the sea (Anadyomene)

    Greek or Roman, Eastern Mediterranean
    Hellenistic or Imperial Period
    100 B.C.–A.D. 70

    Description

    Nude female figure of Aphrodite Anadyomene arranging her long hair, based on a Hellenistic prototype. The goddess of love and beauty, is shown drying herself after being born full-grown from the sea. In Greek the theme is entitled “Aphrodite Anadyomene,” and the birth was thought to have taken place off the coast of Cyprus. She stands on her own pedestal, her left hip resting against a support in the form of a drapery-covered stump. A garment for her use is draped over the tree stump. This composition could also be interpreted as Aphrodite emerging from her bath. Such sculptures had a great popularity in gardens where water basins or fountains were present.
    This statuette is intact, with an even yellow patina on the surfaces.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI224: Isotope ratios - delta13C +3.34 / delta18O -5.99, Attribution - Naxos, Sardis, Justification - Medium to coarse grained marble.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Mohammad Yeganeh, Bundenweg 7, Frankfurt/Main, Germany (according to his invoice of June 1, 1982: allegedly found in Asia Minore); purchased by MFA from Mohammad Yeganeh, June 9, 1982

    Credit Line

    Classical Department Exchange Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 024.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 55 cm (21 5/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1982.286

    Medium or Technique

    Marble

    Not On View

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    Europe, The Ancient World

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  • Hygieia, goddess of Health and Hypnos, god of sleep

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period, Antonine
    about A.D. 140–190

    Place of Manufacture: Asia Minor (probably)

    Description

    Statuette of Hygieia and Hypnos. With her right hand the goddess supported the body of a snake, which stretched itself in front of her body to take an egg from Hygieia’s left hand. A support for the missing body of the snake can be seen on her belly. The infant Hypnos, who has wings like Cupid, takes a nap, resting his head on his knee. The goddess, draped in an ungirdled chiton and long himation, looks down slightly to her left. Right forearm and both hands missing. Breaks across the body (repaired) at neck and near knees. Polished surface chipped and encrusted.

    Snakes were associated with the healing powers of the earth in ancient medical thought, and they were frequently shown as companions of gods of healing. Sleep in the sanctuary of a god noted for curative powers was a popular form of treatment in antiquity.

    Provenance

    By 1968: with André Emmerich Gallery, Inc., 41 East 57th Street, New York (Art of the Ancients, New York, February 7 - March 13, 1968, no. 59 [said to be from Asia Minor and from the art market in Switzerland]); by 1968: with Sotheby & Co., 34 & 35 New Bond Street, London, W.1 (Sotheby & Co. auction, November 26, 1968, lot 172); by 1973: Benjamin Rowland, Jr. Estate; bequest of Benjamin Rowland, Jr. to MFA, February 13, 1974

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Benjamin Rowland, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 191; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Overall: 64.5 x 26.7 x 13 cm (25 3/8 x 10 1/2 x 5 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1974.131

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Dokimeion (modern Afyon) in west-central Asia Minor

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  • Torso of a young god or athlete

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    1st century A.D.

    Description

    Torso of a slender young man. Head, forearms, legs from knees missing. Puntelli at left side and above right knee. His weight is carried on his right leg and his right hip shifts out to the side. He would have held a libation bowl in his extended right hand. In his left, which would have hung by his side, he probably carried a branch of foliage.
    The best parallel for the statuette’s pose and proportions is a Greek bronze statuette of 450-400 B.C. in the Ortiz collection (Vandoeuvres, Switzerland). (For the Ortiz bronze, see P. C. Bol, in Polyklet: Der Bildhauer der griechischen Klassik, Mainz, 1990, no. 152).

    (entry partially adapted from The Art of the Ancient Mediterranean World, no. 185).

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI739: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.79 / delta18O -6.88, Attribution - Pentelikon, Justification - Fine grained marble.

    Provenance

    By 1958: with Gerd Rosen, Berlin (auction 31, Berlin, November 24-29, 1958, lot 1911); before 1966: with Münzen und Medaillen, Malzgasse 25, Basel, Switzerland; by 1966: Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr. Collection (first loaned to MFA as 8.66; later loaned to MFA as 174.67, 21.69, 44.1971,109.1972); 1973: Benjamin Rowland, Jr. Estate; bequest of Benjamin Rowland, Jr. to MFA, February 13, 1974

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Benjamin Rowland, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 152; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 40.5 cm (15 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1974.123

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens

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  • Head of Herakles

    Greek
    Late Classical or Early Hellenistic Period
    about 325 B.C. (?)

    Description

    The head belonged to a statue showing the demigod standing with his club in his lowered right hand, lion’s-skin over the left arm. The end of the nose is damaged. otherwise the surfaces are in excellent condition, clean, and with some slight traces of a cement-like deposit.

    Scientific Analysis:

    University of South Florida Lab No. 8404: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.4 / delta18O -6.7,

    Attribution - Mt. Pentelikon. Justification - C and O isotopes, fine grain, Attic style

    Provenance

    By 1972: with H. Herzer and Company, Antiken, Promenadeplatz 13, 8 Munich 2, Germany (said to be from a private collection in Central Europe); purchased by MFA from H. Herzer and Company, June 7, 1972

    Credit Line

    Benjamin and Lucy Rowland Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 045.

    Dimensions

    Height: 38.7 cm (15 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    1972.392

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens

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  • Statue group of a satyr, a maenad, and Eros

    Roman
    Late Imperial Period
    3rd–4th century A.D.

    Place of Manufacture: Turkey

    Description

    The three figures have been broken and carefully rejoined. Most of the plinth under the larger figures is restored, only that at the maenad’s drapery and right foot remaining. Eros has lost both feet and all his plinth. His right wing was made separately and attached with an iron pin. A modern pin now holds the satyr’s left forearm to where his hand touches the maenad’s breast, and a similar pin runs from his left knee to the large support which runs to the maenad’s drapery. Another such fixture bridges the gap between his raised right food and the swirl of her drapery. The surfaces are covered with root marks and a grayish brown deposit, some of this has been removed. Where it did not affect the areas of flesh and, to a lesser extent, drapery, they have a high polish.
    The scene is a elaboration and, in a sense, a continuation of a famous Hellenistic work, the “Invitation to the Dance,” belonging to the later half of the second century B.C. The motif was popular in the late Roman period, found on both sarcophagi and in sculpture in the round.

    Provenance

    By 1961: with Hesperia Art, 2219 St. James Place, Philadelphia, 3, Pa. (said to have been found at Aphrodisias in Caria); January 10, 1962: purchased by MFA from Hesperia Art for $ 15,000.-.

    Credit Line

    William Francis Warden Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 197; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: satyr: 81 cm (31 7/8 in.); maenad: 82 cm (32 5/16 in.); Eros: 49.1 cm (19 5/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    62.1a-b

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from the Greek islands or Southwest Asia Minor, possibly the quarry of Göktepe.

    On View

    Antioch Mosaic Gallery (Gallery 214A)

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  • Saturn (Kronos)

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 190–211

    Description

    The seated Saturn wore his himation as a veil, part falling or being brought across the lap. Saturn, a god of harvests, carries a sickle, and the sickle in the right hand confirms the identification of this statue. Cults of Saturn were popular in the rich agricultural communities of North Africa. In these formerly Carthaginian areas, he was identified with Baal, the god of Phoenician origins.
    The god’s right arm is mostly missing; the left, now also lost, was doweled on with an iron pin. The back of the statue was worked to be set against a niche, and the bottom was fashioned for insertion in the draped lower limbs, which are missing. The nose and other secondary details have suffered damage, and areas of the surface have remains of gray to very light yellow deposit. The god has a drilled-out beard. The pupils of the eyes were finished in paint.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI263: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.85 / delta18O -3.37, Attribution - Probably Mt. Filfila, Algeria, Justification - isotopes; some gray spots, fine grained, from Algeria.

    Provenance

    By about 1956: said to have come from Cuicul (Jamîla) in Algeria about 1956 via Paris art market; by about 1957: Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr. Collection; gift of Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr. to MFA, December 27, 1965

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 367; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 115 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 42 cm (16 9/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    65.1727

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Filfila, northeastern Algeria

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  • Mixing bowl (column krater)

    Greek
    Archaic Period, Late Corinthian
    about 550 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Corinthia, Corinth

    Description

    On the handle plates: filleted, bearded male and filleted female heads.
    Side A: Charioteer driving quadriga. Herakles firing arrows, while Hesione hurls rocks at dragon.
    Side B: Procession of nine elders to left, wreaths in background. Lowest register: sphinxes, dove, two sets of four geese, griffins, an extra goose, two leopards, and cocks facing a thunderbolt.
    Recomposed with minor in-painting, most noticeable at the face of the charioteer.

    A. Mayor has recently interpreted the head of the “dragon” as an image inspired by the sight of a fossil skull emerging from a cliff (see The First Fossil Hunters, Princeton, 2000, pages 157-165).

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Robert E. Hecht, Jr.; purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., April 10, 1963

    Credit Line

    Helen and Alice Colburn Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Height: 33 cm (13 in.); diameter: 41 cm (16 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    63.420

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    On View

    Greek Archaic Gallery (Gallery 113)

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  • Water jar (hydria) with the chariot of Achilles dragging the corpse of Hektor

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 520–510 B.C.
    the Antiope Group

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    A hydria with the dramatic scene of Achilles dragging the body of Hector behind his chariot; to the left Priam and Hecuba, parents of Hector, mourn him in the Trojan palace as Achilles with round shield stares at them; to the right, the tomb of Patroklos with his soul charging out from it; snake in front. Winged figure of Iris sent to plead for a ransom of Hector’s body. Greek inscriptions of the name ‘Hector’ (HECTOR) above the body of Hector, and ‘Patroklos’ (PATROKLOS) on the tomb.

    On the shoulder: Two quadrigae, one driven by Athena. Herakles pursues Kyknos while Ares rushes from left.

    Inscription

    ΕΚΤΡΩΡ ΠΑΤΡΟΚΛΩ

    Provenance

    1963, sold by Robert E. Hecht, Jr., New York, to the MFA. (Accession Date: May 8, 1963) NOTE: According to Hecht, he purchased the hydria in Zürich in 1959 from Dr. Hadzi Imam Bailde of Makri (modern-day Fethiye), Turkey, who had owned it for at least twenty-five years.

    Credit Line

    William Francis Warden Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 2, pl. 082; Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 064.

    Dimensions

    Height (to mouth): 50 cm (19 11/16 in.); diameter (of mouth): 26.1 cm (10 1/4 in.) Height (to handle - tallest point): 56.5 cm (22 1/4 in.) Width (including handles): 38.5 cm

    Accession Number

    63.473

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    On View

    Krupp Gallery (Gallery 215A)

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  • Head of Helios, with stylized radiate crown and uraeus

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    2nd–3rd century A.D.

    Description

    The hair is wavy, in the tradition of Alexander the Great. The pupils are incised. The rays of the crown are like a cap of leaves. Light green patina. The neck is irregular, suggesting it was broken from a statuette.

    Perhaps from Syria.

    Provenance

    Before 1952: H. C. Morton Collection (said to have been acquired in Jerusalem); by about 1952: Cornelius C. Vermeule III Collection (acquired in London); gift of Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III to MFA, March 11, 1964

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 105.

    Dimensions

    Height: 7.5 cm (2 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    64.316

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

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  • Zeus (or Homer)

    Italic, Etruscan
    Classical Period
    about 440 B.C.

    Description

    Zeus (or Homer ) wears a long garment (himation?) about his waist and most of his legs. It is wrapped around the left shoulder and left arm, falling down the back behind the former. He also wears a fillet in his hair. A sharply-cut face with almond-shaped eyes, straight nose, and a long upper lip characterize the statuette. Right hand and forearm missing, also object held in left hand. Patina is light brown and green, encrusted. Part of original lead base still attached to curved tangs at feet.

    Provenance

    By 1961: with Münzen und Medaillen A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel, Switzerland (Münzen und Medallien auction 22, May 13, 1961, lot 76) ; purchased by MFA from Münzen und Medaillen, A.G., May 12, 1965

    Credit Line

    Seth K. Sweetser Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 184; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 121 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 10.3 cm (4 1/16 in.); max. height including tangs: 12 cm (4 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    65.565

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

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  • Strap handle of a box (?)

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 150–300

    Description

    In high relief, Attis (?) or, equally likely, Paris stands with legs crossed, leaning on a staff. A chest connected with religious cults would suggest Attis, but Paris would be more appropriate to a lady’s wardrobe or vanity chest. This functional piece of decoration was probably made in Asia Minor, most likely in the third century A.D. The design was fairly common in the decorative arts of the Eastern part of the Roman Empire. The motif of Paris or Attis in his Trojan or Phrygian winter costume, standing with legs crossed and leaning on a staff, often came merely to symbolize the cycle of life and the seasons in a very general way. On the ends of sarcophagi of about A.D. 200, the figure is the shepherd watching Endymion and Selene; its appearance on mythological sarcophagi may reflect use purely as a decorative or filling figure, one originating in painting as early as Hellenistic landscapes echoing Theocritus. On a monumental niche or small arch from the Palace of Galerius at Salonika, work of about A.D. 300, it is used twice in the archivolts for the figures of Attis as a winter and as an autumn season. There may be an object in the left hand, but it may be merely that the figure is grasping the end of the staff on which he leans. Attis, in similar pose, usually holds the knife symbolic of the orgies of his cult. Pairs of large, marble architectural figures, pillars and high reliefs, from cities or sites as far apart as Cyzicus in Mysia and Salerno in Italy show the popularity of representations of Attis in the monumental arts. This class of marble reliefs inspired decorators such as the man who made this handle. Hole for swivel or loop above; locking loop on lower reverse broken off. Yellowish metal surface, with green and reddish encrustation.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Hesperia Art, 2219 St. James Place, Philadelphia 3, Pa. (Hesperia Art, Bulletin XI, no. 188); 1964: Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule, Jr. Collection; gift of Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule, Jr. to MFA, February 12, 1964

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 676.

    Dimensions

    Length: 16.5 cm (6 1/2 in.)

    Accession Number

    64.83

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

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  • Statuette of Hekate

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    1st century B.C.–3rd century A.D.

    Description

    Statuette of Hekate with gold leaf on her hair and a gold earring. Her arms are made separately and are attached with metal pins at the shoulders.

    Provenance

    By 1968: with Mathias Komor, 19 East 71st Street, New York, N.Y. 10021 (said to be from southeast Asia Minor); purchased by MFA from Mathias Komor, January 8, 1969

    Credit Line

    Harriet Otis Cruft Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    18.5 cm (7 5/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    69.1

    Medium or Technique

    Bone

    Not On View

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  • Aphrodite

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    A.D. 140–240

    Description

    Aphrodite wears a long tunic with a girt overfold, which has slipped from her left shoulder. Around her hips is an ample himation, which she clutches in her left hand, as the end wraps around her left wrist. This cloak then falls to the base behind, serving as a support for the legs as she steps forward toward the viewer. The goddess may have been shielding her breasts with her right hand, presenting a dressed version of the Capitoline Aphrodite type. In that case, however, the arm could have been carved with the body. It is more likely that she had her right arm raised and held a wreath or slipper in her right hand.
    The head and right arm of this vigorous statuette were attached with iron pins, which in part still remain in place. The surfaces are incrusted, stained with iron, and have a yellow patina.

    Provenance

    By 1962: Misses Aimée and Rosamond Lamb Collection (said to have been acquired in Italy, from Naples or regions to the South ?); gift of Misses Aimée and Rosamond Lamb to MFA, October 10, 1962

    Credit Line

    Gift of Miss Aimée and Miss Rosamond Lamb

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 100.

    Dimensions

    Height: 17.5 cm (6 7/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    62.956

    Medium or Technique

    Marble

    Not On View

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  • Head of Aphrodite

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    3rd century A.D.

    Description

    The small head catches something of the studied vagueness of Praxitelean female beauty as interpreted in the Hellenistic ateliers of Egyptian Alexandria. Aphrodite wears a large diadem, with scalloped enrichment to suggest flowers or jewels on the outer edges; she has her hair done in a knot behind, with the ends in the form of curls or tresses extending toward the shoulders.
    The flowers on the upper right edge of the diadem are missing, and the neck was broken across at the start of the shoulders. Otherwise, the head and neck are in good condition, with surfaces made warmer by a yellowish patina.
    The complete statuette was of a familiar type, probably one showing the goddess gathering up her robe around her as she emerged from the sea, or, conversely, letting it fall from her body as she stepped into the bath.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Richard R. Wagner Collection (acquired by him in Istanbul); gift of Richard R. Wagner to MFA, December 8, 1965

    Credit Line

    Gift of Richard R. Wagner

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 099.

    Dimensions

    Height: 7 cm (2 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    65.1703

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, perhaps from Dokimeion

    Not On View

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  • Head of Polyphemos

    Greek or Roman
    Hellenistic or Imperial Period
    about 150 B.C. or later

    Description

    This head comes from a group, probably of the blinding of Polyphemos, similar to that constructed from fragments found in the grotto at Sperlonga, along the Italian coast southwest of Rome. Polyphemos is based, in details of hair and beard, on a Pergamene centaur. The sculptor was wise in rejecting the older tradition, one seen in Hellenistic terracottas, of showing the monstrous giant as a kind of fat-faced baboon, with large ears and his eye set like a beacon light in the middle of his forehead. Here the rugged, animal power of the creature has been stressed.
    Broken off through the neck and the lower whiskers, the head is in relatively excellent condition, save for the damage to the beard below the mouth. The marble has a yellow-buff tone.

    This is the head of the one-eyed, man-eating Cyclops whom Odysseus finally outwitted and blinded. Here the monster is in a peaceful mood, either waiting to receive the cup of wine offered him by Odysseus, or, more likely, gazing love-struck at the indifferent sea nymph Galatea. The head comes from a sculptural group that might have adorned a public fountain or a luxurious seaside villa. The type originated in the second century B.C., yet the lively and direct style of this piece makes difficult to judge whether it is a contemporary variant or a Roman copy.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Diffraction and determined to be Dolomitic.
    Harvard Lab No. HI363: Isotope ratios - delta13C +3.85 / delta18O -3.03, Attribution - Thasos-Cape Vathy, Justification - Dolomitic by XRD.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: R. L. Ashman Collection; by 1957: with Hesperia Art, 2219 St. James Place, Philadelphia 3, Pa.; purchased by MFA from Hesperia Art, February 13, 1963.

    Credit Line

    Museum purchase with funds donated in honor of Edward W. Forbes

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 105; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 109 (additional published references); Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 068-069.

    Dimensions

    Height: 38.3 cm (15 1/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    63.120

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Dolomitic from the Greek island of Thasos

    On View

    Krupp Gallery (Gallery 215A)

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  • Dionysos and maenad

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    about 1st–2nd century A.D.

    Description

    Only the body and right leg of Dionysos (perhaps once a Priapos figure) and the body and left knee of the maenad are ancient. Her right hand and wrist remain on Priapos’s draped back. The surfaces are somewhat worn and slightly weathered. They have a light yellow to buff color. Graeco-Roman copy of Hellenistic group, heavily restored in the 18th century.

    Provenance

    By 1833: seen by Count Clarac in the Smith Barry Collection, at Marbury Hall, Cheshire; in 1873: seen by Adolf Michaelis at Marbury Hall (A. Michaelis, Ancient Marbles in Great Britain [1882], p. 502, no. 4); by 1946: late Lord Barrymore Collection; 1946: with Sotheby (sold at auction, July 29, 1946 [cited in C. C. Vermeule, AJA 59, 1955, p. 142]); by 1966: Kevorkian Foundation Collection; 1966: with Parke-Bernet, 980 Madison Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10021 (Parke-Bernet auction of Kevorkian Foundation Collection, February 25-26, 1966, lot 270); 1966: with Jerome M. Eisenberg, 1000 Madison Avenue, New York (Art of the Ancient World 2, p. 97, illus.); by 1968: Paul E. Manheim Collection; gift of Paul E. Manheim to MFA, December 11, 1968

    Credit Line

    Gift of Paul E. Manheim

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 196; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Overall: 88.9 x 43.2 cm (35 x 17 in.)

    Accession Number

    68.770

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Greek island (?). Most of the restorations are in the same marble, but some are in Greek mainland marble. The plinth may be Italian (Luna) marble.

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

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    Sculpture

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  • Head of Herakles, after Lysippos

    Greek
    Late Hellenistic Period
    1st century B.C.

    Description

    The left side of the nose was broken away, and, aside from the diagonal break at the neck and raised left shoulder, the head is in excellent condition. The surfaces have suffered some weathering or similar, natural abrasion. The marble has a yellow patina, with brown stains (from soil or metal?) on the face and the left side of the hair, neck, and beard.

    This head is a free, Hellenistic creation, of considerable quality in terms of Greek marble sculpture after bronze prototypes, based on the Weary Herakles fashioned about 320 B.C. for the agora-complex at Sikyon or the gymnasium and baths at Salamis on Cyprus, seemingly work of the Hadrianic period, gives an excellent idea of how a more complex version of this particular figure in marble would have appeared.

    Scientific Analysis:

    Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Diffraction and X-Ray Florescence and determined to be Calcitic.

    Harvard Lab No. HI096: Isotope ratios - delta13C +1.82 / delta18O -2.67, Attribution - Paros 2, Prokonnesos, Thasos-Cape Phaneri& Thasos-Aliki, Usak, Ephesos 2, Heracleia, Mylasa, Naxos-Melanes; Justification - Coarse-grained marble.

    Provenance

    By about 1973: with Antiken (H. Herzer & Co.), Promenadeplatz 13, 8 Munich 2, Germany (from a private collection in Bavaria); purchased by MFA from Antiken (H. Herzer & Co.), January 14, 1976

    Credit Line

    Helen and Alice Colburn Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 104A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 109 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 28 cm (11 in.)

    Accession Number

    1976.6

    Medium or Technique

    Marble

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Asklepios

    Greco-Roman
    Greco-Roman Period

    Description

    Asklepios stands with weight on his left leg, leaning on the staff that was in his right hand. His left hand is mostly concealed in the overfolds of his ample himation at his left side. Right hand, right foot, left foot, and staff are missing. Green patina.

    Provenance

    By 1967: with Jerome M. Eisenberg, 1000 Madison Avenue, New York 10021; gift of Jerome M. Eisenberg to MFA, December 13, 1967.

    Credit Line

    Gift of Jerome M. Eisenberg

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 096A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 120 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Overall: 10.3 x 4.5 cm (4 1/16 x 1 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    67.1025

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Herm bust of Dionysos

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    A.D. 50–140

    Description

    Front of bust and grapes broken off. Parts of the fillet and grapes with leaves and vine in hair have been damaged. Sides smoothed off in antiquity and there are dowel holes drilled for “arms” (supports for wreaths or fillets) set into the sides of the herm.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI743: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.17 / delta18O -1.90, Attribution - Carrara, Justification - Opaque, fine grained marble.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Larz Anderson Collection, Brookline, Mass. (said to have been acquired in Italy after the Civil War); Isabel Anderson Collection, Brookline Mass.; by about 1949: Earle W. Carr Collection (who said in 1979 that he acquired it from the collection of Larz and Isabel Anderson about 30 years ago); purchased by MFA from Earle W. Carr, November 14, 1979

    Credit Line

    The Benjamin and Lucy Rowland Fund, Gift of E. D. B. Vermeule, and Gift of Earle W. Carr

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 028.

    Dimensions

    Height: 26 cm (10 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    1979.523

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Carrara in northwest Italy

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215B)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Oil flask (aryballos)

    Greek
    Orientalizing Period, Middle Protocorinthian IA
    690–675 B.C.
    The Ajax Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Corinthia, Corinth

    Description

    The aryballos is decorated around the shoulder with lion and goats. Principal design: centaur of early type and Zeus wrestle over a scepter between them; a young male (Kronos?) runs in the opposite direction with a sword. Between this figure and the centaur at the back is a pedestal surmounted by a cauldron with two eagles or falcons. The same type, but larger, of bird appear on either side.

    Provenance

    Purchased by Edward Perry Warren in 1894 (according to Warren's records: came 'straight from Corinth') [Warren goes on to note that where it was excavated was not stated]; 1895: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 29,857.37 (this figure is the total price for MFA 95.9-95.174)

    Credit Line

    Catharine Page Perkins Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Fairbanks, Vases (MFA), no. 398.

    Dimensions

    Height: 7.3 cm (2 7/8 in.); diameter: 4.4 cm (1 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    95.12

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Dionysos

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    2nd–early 3rd century A.D.

    Description

    Roman copy or eclectic work, based on a Greek prototype of the fourth century B.C.The tip of the nose and a section of strands of hair near the right eye are restored in plaster. Hair and complex wreath have suffered a fair amount of damage to the most prominent areas.
    The hair is loosely yet severely dressed, parted in the middle and interwined with ivy berries or vine leaves and grapes. The complete statue showed the young god standing in the nude, a kantharos or high-handled drinking cup in his lowered right hand and a thyrsos or pinecone-topped staff in his raised left.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Diffraction and determined to be Dolomitic.
    Harvard Lab No. HI115a: Isotope ratios - delta13C +3.20 / delta18O -3.62, Attribution - Thasos-Cape Vathy, Justification - Dolomitic by XRD.

    Provenance

    By 1839, probably Casimiro Pellegrini-Danieli, Zara (present-day Zadar, Croatia) [see note 1]; 1840, probably sold with the Pellegrini-Danieli collection to Pietro Cernazai (b. 1804 – d. 1858), Udine, Italy; 1858, by inheritance to his brother, Francesco Cernazai (b. 1802 – d. 1881), Udine; 1882, bequeathed by Francesco Cernazai to the Archbishop Seminary of Udine (inv. no. 135) [see note 2]; October 24-31, 1900, Cernazai collection sale, Seminario Arcivescovile, Udine, lot 416. By 1926, Edward Jackson Holmes (b. 1873 – d. 1950), Boston [see note 3]; 1941, gift of Edward Jackson Holmes to the MFA. (Accession Date: December 11, 1941) NOTES: [1] Carlo Federico Bianchi, Zara Cristiana dell’Arcidiacono Capitolare, vol. II (Zara, 1880), 425-427 transcribes an 1839 inventory of the Pellegrini-Danieli collection, which in 1840 was sold en bloc to Pietro Cernazai. The inventory of some 300 works of art does not go into sufficient detail to identify the present sculpture. The Danieli collection had been formed in the eighteenth century by Antonio Danieli, whose antiquities came from the area around Zara, and in particular, from Aenona (present-day Nin, Croatia). [2] See Julius Bankó and Pietro Sticotti, “Antikensammlung im erzbischöflichen Seminare zu Udine,” Archaeologisch-epigraphische Mittheilungen aus Oesterreich – Ungarn 18 (1895), 52-53 (on the history of the collection), and 75, cat. no. 32 (for the present sculpture). [3] Lent by Edward Jackson Holmes to the MFA November 27, 1926 (loan no. 386.26).

    Credit Line

    Gift of Edward Jackson Holmes

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 160; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height x depth: 38 x 26 cm (14 15/16 x 10 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    41.909

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Dolomitic from the Greek Island of Thasos

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Two-handled jar (amphora)

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 570–560 B.C.
    Painter The Goltyr Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Athens, Attica, Greece

    Description

    On shoulder, palmettes on two sides.
    Side A: between two spinxes, two bearded men face one another, each dressed in chiton and himation and crowned with a fillet. The man at the right holds a spear and short stick. The snake-entwined wand shows he is a herald, possibly Hermes himself, but he lacks the winged boots to make this identification certain.
    Side B: within panel, lion on either side of elaborate palmette design.

    Provenance

    By date unknown in 2nd half of 19th century or early 20th century: R. Lanciani Collection; by 1941: Edward Jackson Holmes Collection; gift of Edward Jackson Holmes to MFA, December 11, 1941

    Credit Line

    Gift of Edward Jackson Holmes

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 18.

    Dimensions

    Height: 27.6 cm (10 7/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    41.913

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    Not On View

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    The Ancient World

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    Vessels

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  • Didrachm with head of Janus

    Roman
    Republican Period
    about 225–212 B.C.

    Mint: Rome

    Description

    Obverse: Head of Janus, laureate.
    Reverse: Jupiter in quadriga, right, driven by Victory.
    Below, tablet inscribed: ROMA

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Mrs. Edward Jackson Holmes Collection; June 10, 1954: gift of Mrs. Edward Jackson Holmes to MFA

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Edward Jackson Holmes

    Details

    Dimensions

    Diameter: 22 mm. Weight: 6.22 gm. Die Axis: 5

    Accession Number

    54.672

    Medium or Technique

    Silver

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Numismatics, Coins

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  • Fragment of a water jar (kalpis)

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 520 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Athens, Attica, Greece

    Description

    Festival of Dionysos?
    Preserved are part of head, neck, right shoulder and arm of Dionysos; the upper part of a couple, side by side; the face and beginning of the shoulder of a bearded man. All face right. Dionysos, clad in a chiton and a himation, is wreathed. The central male figure is bearded and wears a chiton and a himation; his female companion is clad in a peplos and a mantle and has drawn the latter over her head, lifting a fold with her left hand.

    (entry from CVA 1, p. 44)

    Provenance

    According to CVA Boston i, p. 44: from Cumae; by 1936: with Aldo Iandolo, Viale del Lazio 37, Rome; gift of Aldo Iandolo to MFA, November 5, 1936

    Credit Line

    Gift of Aldo Iandolo

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 58, 7.

    Dimensions

    Diameter: 10.4 cm ( 4 in.)

    Accession Number

    36.631

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Jar (pelike) with Odysseus and Elpenor in the Underworld

    Greek
    Classical Period
    about 440 B.C.
    the Lykaon Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Odysseus, having slain two rams, seated on a rock conversing with the shade of Elpenor. Hermes stands at the right.
    Reverse: Poseidon pursuing Amymone.

    [Label text]:
    Homer tells us in the Odyssey about Odysseus’ journey to the underworld to learn how to return to his homeland of Ithaca. While in Hades, Odysseus meets Elpenor, the youngest member of his crew. Elpenor had died on the island of the witch Circe; half-drunk and half-asleep, he fell from the roof of Circe’s house. The scene of their reunion in the Underworld is pictured on this pelike. Having not received the proper funeral rites on Circe’s island, Elpenor persuades Odysseus to give him a proper burial. Odysseus has sacrificed the two rams that lie at his feet to honor Elpenor and to keep the other spirits in Hades from tormenting him. Hermes stands behind Odysseus in his typical winged helmet and boots and with his caduceus. Although the messenger god does not appear in Homer’s telling of the story, it is appropriate for him to be a part of this scene as he often acted as a guide to the souls in Hades. The painter shows Odysseus deeply concentrating on the words of the dead sailor while Elpenor speaks. The mysterious scene of Hades depicted here was once highlighted in white pigment to draw out the details of the rocky landscape of the underworld.
    On the opposite side of the vase, Poseidon, the god of the seas and enemy of Odysseus, pursues Amymone, one of the fifty daughters of King Danaus and Europa. Poseidon carries the fisherman’s spear that often identifies him in art. Her kingdom having no water, Amymone went in search of it. In the scene represented here, she carries a water jug. Poseidon fell in love with Amymone and rewarded her for her affection by creating the spring of Lerna. The result of their affair was Nauplius, a great sailor. The woman behind Poseidon is perhaps one of the many sisters of Amymone.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Dr. Jacob Hirsch, Suite 1209, 30 West 54th Street, New York, N.Y.; purchased by MFA from Dr. Hirsch, March 1, 1934, for $ 9,250.00

    Credit Line

    William Amory Gardner Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Caskey-Beazley, Attic Vase Paintings (MFA), no. 111; Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 070-071.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 47.4cm (18 11/16in.) Other (Height x diameter): 34.3 cm (13 1/2 in.) Weight: 15 lb. (6.8 kg)

    Accession Number

    34.79

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    On View

    Krupp Gallery (Gallery 215A)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

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    Vessels

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  • Three-sided relief

    Greek
    Classical Period
    about 450–440 B.C.

    Description

    A three-sided relief cut from a single block. Seated on the right is Demeter with her head veiled in mourning for her daughter Persephone. Aphrodite is seated opposite consulting with her son Eros at the center who holds the scales (made from a separate piece of marble) to determine how long Persephone will stay in the Underworld.
    Short sides: a boy with a lyre; an old nurse.
    Perhaps, the relief served as an enclosure for an outdoor altar.

    “Sculpture in Stone” no. 30, pp. 20-25

    Portions of the surface have been carefully cleaned, but some incrustation remains, especially on the garment of the figure on the left wing, and marks left by the roots of plants are visible in places. The Ludovisi relief and the Warren relief show similar flaws and the same light grayish-brown patina.

    The reliefs themselves have suffered comparatively slight injuries. On the left wing the lower temination of the scroll, which in this case projected beyond the end of the slab, is lost, together with the ends of the old woman’s feet. The edges of the palmettes at the corners are broken off, and there are small breaks along the lower edges at the three sides, especially at the angles. The noses of all five figures, the toes of the winged youth, the plectron of the lyre-player, and the pegs of the lyre are damaged.

    Certain other changes were produced, partly by accident and partly by design, in Roman times, when the relief was removed from its original position. As on the Ludovisi relief, marks made by crowbars, used to pry the monument from its pedestal, are visible at several places along the bottom, on both the outer and the inner faces. On the left wing an irregular groove runs across the bottom surface close to the corner, and continues obliquely upward across the face of the relief.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Diffraction and determined to be Dolomitic.
    Harvard Lab No. HI090: Isotope ratios - delta13C +3.48 / delta18O -3.06, Attribution - Thasos-Cape Vathy, Justification - Dolomitic by XRD.

    Provenance

    1894: Found in Rome in a private villa on via Boncampagni in the same region as the Ludovisi relief, in the area of the ancient Gardens of Sallust (the Ludovisi Quarter) on the Pincian Hill; acquired successively by Valenzi, Jandolo, Martinetti, and Hartwig before being purchased by Edward Perry Warren in 1896; purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, May 5, 1908, for $ 3,600.00

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 030; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 107 (additional published references); Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 088-089.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 82 x 161 cm (32 5/16 x 63 3/8 in.) Framed (Rolling steel pedestal/ removable top steel pallet): 100.3 x 186.7 x 95.3 cm (39 1/2 x 73 1/2 x 37 1/2 in.) Weight: 1587.59 kg (3500 lb.)

    Accession Number

    08.205

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Dolomitic from the Greek island of Thasos

    On View

    Greek Late Classical and Hellenistic Gallery (Gallery 212A)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Architectural elements

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  • Mixing bowl (bell krater)

    Greek
    Early Classical Period
    about 470 B.C.
    the Pan Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Two sided red-figure bell krater used for mixing wine and water.
    Side A: Artemis shooting an arrow at Aktaion who has fallen to the ground attacked by his hunting dogs. Aktaion was a hunter, and the goddess of the hunt killed him by turning him into a stag, so that his own dogs tore him to pieces. This elegant rendering of the myth, with Artemis drawing her bow for the coup de grace, and the helpless hero sinking beneath the onslaught of the hounds, is considered one of the greatest of all Athenian vase paintings.

    Side B: The artist is named the Pan Painter after this scene of the goat-god Pan chasing a young shepherd wearing a fawn-skin (nebris), and a rustic sun hat. The god of flocks obviously has love on his mind, perhaps inspired by the ithyphallic herm standing on a hill in the background. Herms were stone or wooden shafts with the head of the god Hermes, rudimentary arms, and a large carved phallos. Apart from their religious significance, which is poorly understood, they often served to mark boundaries and the intersections of roads. The rustic setting of this herm relates it to Priapos, or some other god of fertility.

    Pan is not represented in Athenian art until after the Battle of Marathon in 490 B.C., when he was said to have caused a “panic” in the Persian ranks. When one remembers that, like the Persians, Aktaion was punished for his pride, and that his death occurred on the slopes of Mt. Kithairon, the site of the Persian defeat at Plataia, the entire vase becomes a symbol and a memorial of triumph of Athens over Persians.

    Condition: Broken and repaired.

    Provenance

    By 1910: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: bought in Sicily; said to be from Cumae); purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, June 2, 1910, for $4,000.00 (this figure is the total price for MFA 10.159-10.230)

    Credit Line

    Julia Bradford Huntington James Fund and Museum purchase with funds donated by contribution

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Caskey-Beazley, Attic Vase Paintings (MFA), no. 094; Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 034.

    Dimensions

    Height: 37 cm (14 9/16 in.); diameter: 42.5 cm (16 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    10.185

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    On View

    Greek Archaic Gallery (Gallery 113)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
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  • Steelyard weight

    Greek or Roman
    Late Hellenistic to Early Imperial Period
    about 100 B.C.–A.D. 50

    Description

    Bust of Artemis, head turned to right and hair piled high in two parts with suspension hole between. Eyes hollow. Over right shoulder, fawn skin; beneath, chiton; on back of right shoulder, a quiver. Corroded; green and black patina.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Hugo Weissmann, 96 Charles Street, Boston (said to be from near Izmir [Smyrna]); purchased by MFA from Hugo Weissmann, January 8, 1958, for $ 150.00

    Credit Line

    William E. Nickerson Fund, No. 2

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 641; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 127 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Overall: 12.3 x 8 cm (4 13/16 x 3 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    58.16

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Weights and measures

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  • Relief from a Season sarcophagus with two winged cupids

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 280

    Description

    Two winged youths or genii personify the seasons Summer and Autumn. Summer holds a basket of flowers and fruits, and another basket lies at his feet. Autumn has returned with his barking hound from the hunt and holds the captured hare and a cornucopia. A small Eros and another hare filling the spaces at the feet of the larger figures. The Seasons themselves express the cycle of life in terms of nature, a tradition of representation often evident in Greek mythology. The scene was completed by Winter and Spring on the left front and, perhaps, two more winged genii supporting the image of the deceased, represented as a tondo bust, in the center.

    The right edge has been cut away evenly at the corner; the left front has been cut more irregularly. The remaining surfaces are damaged and considerably weathered.

    Provenance

    By about 1600 to 19th century at least: in the Palazzo Giustiniani (now Palazzo Madama) collection (the complete side of the sarcophagus is illustrated in P. Kranz, Jahreszeiten-Sarkophage, pl. 34); by date unknown: Abraham C. Webber Collection (acquired in an antique shop on Cape Cod); by date unknown: Mrs. Abraham C. Webber Collection; gift of Mrs. Abraham C. Webber to MFA, June 5, 1958

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Abraham C. Webber in memory of Mr. Abraham C. Webber

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 248; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 113 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Overall: 70 x 57 x 17cm (27 9/16 x 22 7/16 x 6 11/16in.) Weight: 83.92 kg (185 lb.)

    Accession Number

    58.584

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, probably from the island of Proconnesos in the Sea of Marmara

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Aphrodite

    Roman
    Imperial Period

    Description

    Aphrodite has a dolphin-like support at her left side. Her himation is arranged around her lower limbs, and four ringlets of hair remain on the back of her neck.
    The torso, drapery, and lower limbs have a yellow coloring, on relatively undeteriorated surfaces.

    Provenance

    By 1961: Mrs. Godfrey Peckitt Collection (from Egypt); gift of Mrs. Godfrey Peckitt to MFA, December 1961

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Godfrey Peckitt

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 180; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 23.2 cm (9 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    61.1408

    Medium or Technique

    Marble resembling alabaster

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Aphrodite

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period

    Description

    This essentially decorative representation of Aphrodite, with a dolphin-like support at her left side, was undoubtedly carved at Alexandria in Egypt. The small figure showed the goddess standing holding the end of her tresses with her raised right hand and perhaps a mirror with the left. What remains of this statuette, essentially the torso and upper legs, has a plain surface, now tempered by a dirty yellow patina.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Diffraction and determined to be Dolomitic with a little Calcite.

    Provenance

    By 1961: Mrs. Godfrey Peckitt Collection (from Egypt); gift of Mrs. Godfrey Peckitt to MFA, December 1961

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Godfrey Peckitt

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 179; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 26 cm (10 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    61.1409

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Greek island

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Herakles

    Italic, Etruscan
    Later Hellenistic Period
    about 200 B.C.

    Description

    Herakles is brandishing his club in the raised right hand, and attachments indicate that an object such as a sword or spear was held in the outstretched left hand. The Nemean Lion’s skin is worn on the hero’s head, forepaws being knotted around the neck and hind-paws and tail wrapped over the left arm. Left hand missing. Dark green patina.

    Provenance

    By 1961: Mrs. Samuel Cabot Collection; gift of Mrs. Samuel Cabot to MFA, September 20, 1961

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Samuel Cabot

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 185.

    Dimensions

    Height: 8.5 cm (3 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    61.940

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Fragment of a mixing bowl (volute-krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical to Early Hellenistic Period
    about 330 B.C.
    Painter the Darius Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    The Departure of Amphiaraos. A white Ionic column topped by a yellow tripod marks the scene’s center. In the upper register, Athena sits to the left with her spear at her side, her upper body missing. Amphiaraos stands below with a spear and shield; his head, shoulders and left arm are preserved; his face is in three-quarters view. He has a cloak fastened around his shoulders and wears a cuirass and a helmet, whose white crest has a red edge. The helmeted head and cloaked upper body of the chariot-driver (Baton?) are visible at right. He wears a chiton, chlamys, and spiky Phrygian helmet.

    (Text from Vase-Painting in Italy, entry no. 44)

    The Departure of Amphiaraos. A white Ionic column topped by a yellow tripod marks the scene’s center. In the upper register, Athena sits to the left with her spear at her side, her upper body is missing. She wears a himation and peplos; her shoes and the butt of her spear are white. Amphiaraos stands below with a spear and shield; his head, shoulders, and left arm are preserved; his face is in three-quarter view. He has a cloak fastened about his shoulders and wears a white cuirass and a yellow helmet, whose white crest has a red edge. There is a wave-pattern around the inner rim of the shield, whose center is red; the shield’s fittings, including its arm band, are yellow. The helmeted head and cloaked upper body of the chariot driver (Baton?) are visible at the right. He wears a chiton, chlamys, and a spiky Phrigian helmet, tinted yellow. The hand and twisted staff visible at the extreme left may belong to the pedagogue of the king’s sons. The groundlines beneath Athena and the pedagogue are indicated by the double rows of dots.

    Trendall and Cambitoglou (RVAp, II, p. 493) note the close connection with two other volute-kraters, the closest being Cleveland 88.41 (RVAp, II, p. 496, no. 18/41, pl. 177; Aellen, Cambitoglou, and Chamay, Peintre de darius, pp 111-114; H. Lohmann, Boreas 9 [1986], pls. 5-6; E.H Turner, BClevMus 76 [1989], pp. 40-41, 49 [fig. 2], 68, no. 2) On the Cleveland krater, Artemis is seated above with a white dog, and the column is absent. Amphiaraos holds out a phiale in his right hand toward a sorrowing youth, perhaps Alkmaion. The pedagogue is replaced by a youth with a ball and a hoop, possibly Amphilochos. In the second version by the painter (Leningrad 1710: RVAp, II, p. 490, no. 18/21; H. Lohmann, Boreas 9 [1986], pl. 7, 2), the pedagogue is in nearly the same position as on the Boston fragment, separated from Amphiaraos only by a Fury, who on the Cleveland krater steadies the horses of the quadriga. For the subject, see H. Lohmann, Boreas 9 (1986), pp. 65-82.

    Provenance

    By 1953: Swiss Private Collection; by 1954: Dr. Christoph Clairmont Collection: January 11, 1961: purchased by MFA from Dr. Christoph Clairmont for $ 950.00 (the total price for 61.110-61.113) with funds from the bequest of Miss Grace Nelson (recorded as Bequest of Miss Grace Nelson)

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Miss Grace Nelson

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 044.

    Dimensions

    Height x width: 14 x 17 cm (5 1/2 x 6 11/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    61.113

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Oil flask (alabastron) in the form of a siren

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 575 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Probably East Greece (Asia Minor)

    Description

    Plastic alabastron in faience with green glaze. In form of bird with woman’s head, seated on a low rectangular base.

    Provenance

    By 1900: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: Rome); purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, February 1900

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Fairbanks, Vases (MFA), no. 505.

    Dimensions

    Height 6.6 x 9.3 cm (2 5/8 x 3 11/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    00.364

    Medium or Technique

    Faience, mold-made

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Mixing bowl (column-krater) with maenad and Dionysos

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 340–235 B.C.
    Artist The Patera Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Apulia, Italy

    Description

    A: A maenad, with a torch in her right hand and a large basket containing a white cake and sprigs in the left hand, is walking to the left, looking back. She wears a chiton and kekryphalos and has a cloak over her right arm. Her jewelry consists of a bracelet, necklace, and earrings, all in added white and yellow. Her chignon is secured with a white fillet. She is followed by the young Dionysos, carrying a dotted wreath in his right hand and a thyrsos and a cloak in the left. He is nude except for a yellow wreath and fillet. White fillets hang from the torch, the thyrsos, the wreath, and the upper border. There is a rosette in the field at right, a tendril in the lower right corner, and a plant with white berries growing from the dotted groundline. The figures walk on groundlines of white dots.
    B: Two youths wearing shoes and himatia and holding crooked staffs in their right hands, stand facing each other. Filling the field between their heads is a grotesquely enlarged writing tablet. There are stylized jumping weights at the upper left and a quadrated disk with dots at the upper right.
    In the panels on either side of the neck are ivy vines with circular berries. A wave-pattern is on the outer rim and small black palmettes on the sides of the handle-plates. There are rays around the top of the rim and black palmettes on top of the handle-plates. The pictures have lateral frames of degenerate ivy and upper frames of tongues. The lower frame on each side consists of groups of four stopt maeanders to left alternating with dotted cross-squares.
    The Patera Painter was a contemporary of the Darius Painter. A prolific painter, mostly of large pots with funerary scenes he seems to have worked at Taranto, Ruvo, and finally Canosa, where he influenced the Baltimore Painter. The ornament and figures on this krater are entirely characteristic. That the rectangle on side B is indeed a writing tablet is made clear on other vases, where the stylus is well defined; compare the stylus and tablet, as well as the youths holding crooked staffs, on London F 295 (RVAp, II, p. 742, no. 23/126, pl. 274,6). Sometimes the rectangle is instead a cista held by one of the youths (e.g. RVAp, II, pl. 275, 6, no. 23/145b). For a similar basket with cake and sprigs, compare RVAp, II, pl. 274, 2, no. 23/127. For a recent study of the artist, see K. Schauenburg, AA 1992, pp. 413-431; see also S. Caranti Martignago, in “II Carobbio 5” (1979), pp. 62-70.

    (text from Vase-Painting In Italy, catalogue entry no. 58)

    Provenance

    1960: Source Unknown; accessioned by MFA in 1960

    Credit Line

    Source unidentified

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 058.

    Dimensions

    Height: 42 cm (16 9/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    60.1171

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Statuette of a woman leaning on a pillar

    Greek
    Hellenistic Period
    late 3rd or early 2nd B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Turkey, Myrina

    Description

    Statuette of a standing draped woman leaning on a pillar. She is resting her right hand on her hip and her left elbow on a pillar. On the front of the pillar there is a figure of nude Eros wearing a floral crown. The woman is wearing a long chiton and an himation that wraps all around her body. She wears a wreath and earrings. Her hair is wavy and drawn back in a knot. The little Eros has an himation wrapped around his left arm and brought behind his body. The pillar stands on a low plinth and has a molded capital.

    Left forearm of the woman and both arms of Eros are missing.
    Face cream-color; hair reddish brown; garments pink with blue stripes and borders.

    Red clay.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren; purchased from Edward Perry Warren by W. A. Gardner; gift of W. A. Gardner to MFA, December 12, 1907

    Credit Line

    Gift of W. A. Gardner

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Burr, Terra-cottas from Myrina (MFA), no. 102.

    Dimensions

    38 cm (14 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    07.865

    Medium or Technique

    Terracotta

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Mirror stand with Aphrodite and Erotes

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 500 B.C.

    Description

    Mirror-stand. Aphrodite and Erotes. Aphrodite stands on round base; wearing boots, Ionic chiton, and peplos. Left hand holds up peplos; right hand extended with flower. Erotes wears boots. The back of the mirror’s immediate support takes the form of a palmette.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: W. H. Forman collection; by 1899: with Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 13 Wellington Street, Strand, London W.C. (sale of the Forman collection, June 19-22, lot 66); by date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren; January 19, 1904: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 74,100.00 (this figure is the total price for MFA 04.6-04.37)

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 352; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 122 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 25.6 cm (10 1/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    04.7

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Tools and equipment, Cosmetic and medical

    More Info
  • Water jar (hydria)

    Greek
    Late Archaic Period
    about 530–520 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Panel on front and shoulder. On body, Herakles and Triton. On shoulder, three youths, each leading a horse to right.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: according to CVA, Boston, fasc. 2, pl. 76: from Vulci; by date unknown: Campanari Collection; by 1856: Rogers Collection; 1856: with Christie and Manson (sale of the Rogers Collection, lot 347); by 1899: Collection of W. H. Forman; 1899: with Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 13 Wellington Strand, London, W.C. (sale of the Forman Collection, June 19-22, lot 284); 1899: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: From Campanari and Rogers Collections. Forman Sale, Lot 284); purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, 1899, for $ 32,500.00 (this is the total price for MFA 99.338-99.542)

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 2, pl. 076; Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 161.

    Dimensions

    Height: 39.6 cm (15 9/16 in.); diameter: 29.2 cm (11 1/2 in.)

    Accession Number

    99.522

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Two-handled jar (amphora) with Herakles driving a bull to sacrifice

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 525–520 B.C.
    the Andokides Painter, the Lysippides Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    This amphora is decorated on both sides but in different painting techniques. One side has a scene depicted in the Red Figure style, and the other side shows the same scene in the Black Figure style. This type of decoration puts the vase into the so-called Bilingual group.
    The traditional attributions for the painter is: the Black Figure (side A) is by the Lysippides Painter, and the Red Figure (side B) is by the Andokides Painter.

    Both sides depict Herakles driving a bull to sacrifice, past a tree, holding his club in his right hand, and in his left the rope fastened round the horns of the bull, also a bundle of spits. He wears a short tunic (chitoniskos), a lionskin, a belt, has sword and quiver slung, by crossbands, at his left flank, carries two small wineskins, apparently empty, over his left arm. The bull’s head is filleted with colorful ribbons, and the woollen fillet has the form commonly used for this purpose as for others, tied at intervals and the ends splayed.

    Condition: Considerably restored.

    Provenance

    By 1842: with Basseggio, Rome; by 1854: Joly de Bammeville Collection (Christies auction, May 13, 1854, lot 40); date unknown in the mid 19th century: W. H. Forman Collection; inherited first by his sister-in-law Mrs. Burt and later by his nephew Major A. H. Browne of Callaly Castle, Northumberland, somewhere around the year 1889; by 1899: with Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 13 Wellington Street, Strand, London, W.C. (auction of the Forman Collection, June 19-22, lot 305); 1899: with Edward Perry Warren; purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, 1899, for $ 32,500.00 (this is the total price for MFA 99.338-99.542)

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Caskey-Beazley, Attic Vase Paintings (MFA), no. 115.

    Dimensions

    Height: 53.2 cm (20 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    99.538

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure and Red Figure (Bilingual)

    On View

    Greek Archaic Gallery (Gallery 113)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Covered drinking cup (kylix)

    Greek
    Classical Period
    about 460–450 B.C.
    Possibly by the Carlsruhe Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Both the form and decoration of this cup are extremely unusual. The cover, seen here from above, was not designed to open. The cup was filled through a hollow in its stemmed base, and libations were poured out through the opening in the cover. The cup depicts the god Apollo appearing before one of the nine Muses, goddesses of the arts, whom he led and inspired. The lyre this Muse holds was originally gilded. She sits on a rock and wears a light brown dress (chiton).

    The exterior sides of the cup are decorated with two (one on each side) fully draped women running, carrying sprigs.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: found in a tomb near Cape Zoster with 00.357); February 1900: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Caskey-Beazley, Attic Vase Paintings (MFA), no. 036; Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 033.

    Dimensions

    Height: 7.7 cm (3 1/16 in.); diameter: 16.6 cm (6 9/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    00.356

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, white ground with traces of gilding and traces of a red undercoat for the gilding

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Cameo with the wedding of Cupid and Psyche, or an initiation rite

    Roman
    Late Republican or Early Imperial Period
    mid 1st–late 1st century B.C.
    Signed by Tryphon

    Description

    Layered onyx. Cameo. The wedding of Cupid and Psyche. Incised Greek inscription: “Tryphon made it.”

    Provenance

    Known since the early 16th century when the cameo was drawn by Pirro Ligorio; by 1628 in the collection of Flemish artist Peter Paul Rubens; by 1727 inventoried in the collection of the Duke of Arundel; in the 18th century: Duke of Marlborough Collection; in 1875 sold to D. Bromilow; by 1899: with Christie, Manson & Woods, 8 King Street, St. James's Square, London (auction of the Marlborough Collection, June 26, 1899, lot 160); 1899: with Edward Perry Warren; 1899: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 16,502.52 (this figure is the total price for MFA 99.101-99.119)

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 091.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 3.7 x 4.5 x 0.6 cm (1 7/16 x 1 3/4 x 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    99.101

    Medium or Technique

    Onyx

    On View

    Anne and Blake Ireland Gallery (Gallery 210A)

    Collections

    Jewelry, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Cameos

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  • Two-handled jar (amphora) with Herakles

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 520 B.C.
    the Antimenes Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Athens, Attica, Greece

    Description

    Side A: Herakles killing the Nemean lion, flanked by Iolaos and Athena.
    Side B: Herakles grasping right hand of Athena, flanked by Iolaos and Hermes. A large piece in B restored.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Mrs. Abbott Lawrence Collection; 1897: gift to MFA of Mrs. Abbott Lawrence in the name of J. W. Paige

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Abbott Lawrence in the name of J. W. Paige

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 41.

    Dimensions

    Height: 40.8 cm (16 1/16 in.); diameter: 27.5 cm (10 13/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    97.205

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    On View

    Michael C. Ruettgers Gallery of Ancient Coins (Gallery 212C)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Mercury (Hermes)

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    A.D. 30–40

    Description

    An under life size nude; the wings in his hair, now broken off, indicate he is Mercury (Hermes), the messenger of the gods and conductor of souls to the Underworld. This work is a fleshier, Roman interpretation of the style of the Greek sculptor Polykleitos.

    It has been recently suggested that the Hermes/Mercury stood in the facade of the amphitheater of Capua, placed there during a renovation probably dating to the reign of Antoninus Pius.

    A hard, calcareous deposit partly covers the front of the body; this has been removed from the face, neck, and parts of the chest by means of acid, corroding and discoloring portions of the surface.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI357: Isotope ratios - delta13C +4.92 / delta18O -3.37, Attribution - Paros 1.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren (according to L. D. Caskey, Catalogue of Greek and Roman Sculpture: from the neighborhood of Capua); 1895: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 29,857.37 (this figure is the total price for MFA 95.9-95.174)

    Credit Line

    Catharine Page Perkins Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 145; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Overall: 72cm (28 3/8in.)

    Accession Number

    95.67

    Medium or Technique

    Marble (probably from the Greek island of Paros)

    On View

    Classical Roman Gallery (Gallery 213)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Head of Aphrodite

    Greek or Roman
    Late Hellenistic or Early Imperial Period
    about 1st century B.C.

    Description

    Head turned slightly to her left with hair secured by a ribbon, below which it was pulled back to a loose knot at the nape of her neck. Surface rough with corrosion. The top of the head was made separately; eyes originally made of another material.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Fluorescence and determined to be Calcitic.
    Harvard Lab No. HI236: Isotope ratios - delta13C +1.93 / delta18O -1.05, Attribution - Probably Paros 2, Justification - Coarse grained marble.

    Provenance

    By 1764: collection of Henry Temple, Second Viscount Palmerston (1739-1802), of Broadlands, Hampshire (purchased in Italy); date unknown: collection of Lord Ronald Gower; by date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren; purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, October 1896

    Credit Line

    Catharine Page Perkins Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 158; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height x length (of face): 37 x 22 cm (14 9/16 x 8 11/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    96.694

    Medium or Technique

    Marble probably from the Greek island of Paros

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Oil flask (lekythos) in the form of Aphrodite

    Greek
    Late Classical Period
    mid-4th century B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Lekythos for oils or perfumes shaped in the form of Aphrodite rising from an open shell, with two Erotes hovering above. Figures painted in white; inside of the shell is pink; six rosettes of yellow and gold set about the vessel; traces of pigment (yellow, blue, gold?) found on figures.

    Provenance

    By about 1898: with E. Geladakis (found in excavations which he made at Eretria); purchased from E. Geladakis as a gift of Mrs. S. T. Morse, for $500, October 1900

    Credit Line

    Museum purchase with funds donated by Mrs. Samuel Torrey Morse

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 087.

    Dimensions

    Height: 19 cm (7 1/2 in.)

    Accession Number

    00.629

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Figural

    On View

    Greek Archaic Gallery (Gallery 113)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Statuette of Aphrodite leaning on a column

    Greek
    Early Hellenistic Period
    end of 4th century B.C.

    Description

    Statuette. Aphrodite, leaning on a column. Breast cross-cords frame the breasts. Hair reddish brown; traces of blue in folds of himation; ground layer of white overall.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: Bought in Naples: from Canosa.); purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, December 1901

    Credit Line

    Museum purchase with funds donated by contribution

    Details

    Dimensions

    Overall: 23.1 x 9.5 x 7 cm (9 1/8 x 3 3/4 x 2 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    01.7956

    Medium or Technique

    Terracotta

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Mantiklos "Apollo"

    Greek
    Late Geometric or Early Orientalizing Period
    about 700–675 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Boiotia, Thebes

    Description

    A votive statuette of Apollo evidenced by the inscription on the front of the thighs of this standing nude male figure; inscribed in archaic Boeotian characters “Mantiklos donated me as a tithe to the far shooter, the bearer of the Silver Bow. You, Phoebus (Apollo) give something pleasing in return.” There are marks of attachment on the top of the head and a hole for attachment in the forehead. The hole in the left hand has been identified as support for a bow. It has been suggested also that the figure was a warrior, wearing a helmet and carrying a spear in the left hand and a shield on the right arm.

    Inscription

    ΜΑΝΤΙΚΛΟΣΜΑΝΕΘΕΚΕFΕΚΑΒΟΛΟΙΑΡΓΥΡΟΤΟΧΣΟΙΤΑΣΔΕΚΑΤΑΣΤΥΔΕΦΟΙΒΕΔΙΔΟΙΧΑΡΙFΕΤΤΑΝΑΜΜΟΙ

    Provenance

    According to W. Fröhner, La Collection Tyszkiewicz (1897), p. 40: found in Thebes and sent to M. Hoffmann toward the end of 1894; by 1897: Count Michel Tyszkiewicz Collection; 1898: auction of the M. Tyszkiewicz Collection, Hotel des Commissaires-Priseurs, 9 rue Drouot, Paris, June 8-10, lot 133 (trouvée à Thèbes); by 1903: with Edward Perry Warren; purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, March 1903

    Credit Line

    Francis Bartlett Donation of 1900

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 015; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 118 (additional published references); Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 047.

    Dimensions

    Height: 20.3 cm (8 in.)

    Accession Number

    03.997

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    On View

    Greek Archaic Gallery (Gallery 113)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Hermes Kriophoros (the ram bearer)

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 520–510 B.C.

    Description

    Votive statuette of Hermes as bearded shepherd and guardian of the flocks. Dressed as a herdsman in a short belted tunic, brimmed hat, and low laced boots, he holds small ram safe beneath his left arm; probably held the herald’s staff (kerykeion in Greek, caduceus in Latin) in his right hand. Possibly made in Sikyonian workshop. Some details incised after casting. Greenish gray patina.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren (according to MFA archival card: from Arcadia); January 19, 1904: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 74,100.00 (this figure is the total price for MFA 04.6-04.37)

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 022; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 118 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 16.7 cm (6 9/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    04.6

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    On View

    Greek Archaic Gallery (Gallery 113)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Eros with a goose

    Greek
    Hellenistic Period
    200–140 B.C.

    Description

    Eros. Dressed as a girl; holds a bunch of grapes away from a goose at his right side. White ground terracotta; Eros’ hair redbrown; legs of goose red; Eros’ face yellow; outer feathers of wings, grapes, goose’s body blue; clothing and inner feathers of wings pink; top of pedestal blue-gray.

    Greece or Asia Minor.

    Provenance

    Date unknown: Lécuyer collection; by 1903: with Edward Perry Warren; purchased from Edward Perry Warren by MFA, 1903

    Credit Line

    Francis Bartlett Donation of 1900

    Details

    Dimensions

    Height: 17 cm (6 11/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    03.889

    Medium or Technique

    Terracotta

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Mixing bowl (volute krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 340 B.C.
    Style resembles the Varrese Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    Connected with the work of the Varrese Painter; it is a possible link between the works of the Gioia del Colle Painter and the Painter of Copenhagen 4223 and those of the Darius Painter.

    A: The death of Thersites. All the principal figures are labeled with incised inscriptions. Rows of white and yellow dots indicating groundlines run throughout the scene on several levels. Achilles (Greek) and the aged Phoenix (Greek) are shown at the center within the pavilion of Achilles, an airy structure with a pediment, palmette akroteria, and slender, fluted Aeolic capitals. In the center of the pediment is a slender figure with upraised arms, like the kouros-handle of a patera. The side of the pavilion’s floor is decorated with a labryinthine maeander and saltire-squares. The row of squares above the architrave resembles a Doric frieze but may represent the ends of the ceiling joists. Achilles is seated on a luxurious kline, his cloak beneath him, holding a spear in his right hand and leaning on a pile of cushions, which, like the mattress and coverlets, are elaborately embroidered. Long ringlets frame the hero’s face, drawn in three-quarter view. A sword, presumably that just used to decapitate Thersites (Greek), hangs at his side from a white baldric. Phoenix leans on his staff and holds his head in worry. His himation is pulled up over his head; his legs are crossed. The front of the couch is painted white, perhaps to indicate ivory. Its vine decoration is yellow, as is the broad footstool, decorated with egg-pattern. Two chariot wheels, a pair of greaves, a sword, a shield with a gorgoneion device, and a plumed piloshelmet, all yellow, hang from the ceiling of the pavilion. The decapitated body of Thersides, in shoes and disheveled himation, lies in front of the pavilion.

    The eyes in the liberated head are shut in death; the grizzled beard shows that Achilles has killed an older man.

    Other heroes and divinities are on either side. Agamemnon (Greek) approaches from the left, holding a scepter with an eagle finial in his right hand. He wears an embroidered, long-sleeved tunic, embades, and a swirling himation. Agamemnon is followed by the younger Phorbas (Greek), who wears embades, a chlamys, and a yellow pilos, and rests a spear on his left shoulder. To the right, Diomedes (Greek), the cousin of Thersites, wearing a chlamys and a white pilos, rushes up to avenge his kinsman. He is accompanied by an Aetolian warrior (Greek) with a spear, sword baldric, and yellow shield. Diomedes starts to draw his sword, but is restrained by Menelaos (Greek). Menelaos wears a chlamys and has a sword slung at his left side.

    In the upper tier are four figures. At the left of the pavilion are Pan (Greek) and a seated, winged figure like a Fury, labeled Poina (Vengeance). The Fury wears an embroidered chiton with a white belt, crossed bandoleers, tall boots, and a necklace. White snakes twine in her hair. Her face is in three-quarter view. In her right hand she holds a sword; in her left, a scabbard and spear. Pan is leaning against a tree, a spotted animal skin over his shoulders and a wreath on his horned head. He holds his yellow-brown pedum in his right hand. In the field above is a rosette.

    To the right of the building Athena (Greek) sits on a round, yellow shield, wearing chiton, himation, yellow shoes, and white diadem, aegis, bracelets, earrings, and necklace. In front of her, Hermes (Greek) stands with his legs crossed, wearing winged shoes, chlamys, and wreath. He carries his yellow caduceus and petasos in his left hand and a tall branch with a pendant fillet in his right. At the lower left, the helmeted Automedon, wearing a chlamys, kneels with a shield on his left arm and a spear in his right hand, as if guarding the mutilated Thersites. In the foreground and around Automedon (Greek) and the dead man are objects testifying to the violent action: a broken lustral basin, a tripod, a staff, a footbath, and a variety of metal vases, including two phialai, a kantharos, an oinochoe, and a volute-krater.
    To the right, a slave or commoner (Greek), wearing boots and a cloak over his left arm, runs off in horror. Many of the larger yellow objects, like shields are toned so that more of the white underpainting shows through at either the forward or
    upper edge to suggest the play of light.

    As told in the “Aethiopis”, Thersites was slain in a fit of temper by Achilles, for teasing him about his ill-fated love for the Amazon queen Penthesilea. The Greeks were angry and divided as a result of this brutal act, and Achilles had to sail to Lesbos and sacrifice to Apollo in order to appease his fellow leaders and warriors. The reaction of the character labeled Demos may allude to the revulsion among “hoi polloi”. The emotions aroused are well portrayed by the painter, who represented the anger of Agamemnon, the chagrin of Phoenix, the anguish of Diomedes, and the haughty nonchalance of Achilles. It is interesting that the Fury Poina, a character who turns up in several Apulian mythological scenes where bad business is at hand (cat. no. 42), has her sword drawn; in this context, she must represent the slashing vengeance of Achilles, the personification of his wrath. Trendall and Webster (“Illustrations”, pp. 106-107) suggest the scene may be based on the “Achilles Thersitoktonos” of Chaeremon, a fourth-century dramatist; this may be correct, but if so, the vase-painter has enlarged and elaborated on the stage version, with more protagonists than would be in any single scene.

    B. A young man in a chlamys and holding a spear in his left hand stands beside a horse within a white-painted naiskos with a pediment and palmette akroteria. The naiskos has an elaborately decorated plinth (maeanders, lesbian cymatium, key-pattern, scrolling rendrils). There are three figures on either side, in two registers. At left, a seated woman with a phiale is offered a wreath by a wreathed youth leaning on a staff. Below them, a woman runs to the right with a yellow “xylophone” and a basket of offerings. On the right, a wreathed youth seated on his cloak and holding a staff and phiale faces a woman with a wreath in her left hand and a branch in her right. Below them, a wreathed youth with a basket of offerings in his left hand leans on his staff. He holds a flower in his right hand and has shoes and a cloak. All three women wear shoes, chiton, kekryphalos, earrings, bracelets, and necklace. Among the offerings in the baskets are alabastra painted yellow and white. Fillets and rosettes float in the upper field.

    The similarity between the pavilion of Achilles on the obverse and the funerary naiskos on the reverse invites comparison between the dead horseman and the greatest of Greek heroes. Achilles was the very embodiment of “arete”, and that is the quality celebrated by the youth’s monument. He has joined the heroic dead and, like Odysseus, will see Achilles and the other Homeric heroes in the Underworld. For horsemen as heroes, and demigods, seee A. Cermanovic-Kuzmanovic et. al., “LIMC”, VI, 1, pp. 1019-1081, especially p. 1025; VI, 2, pls. 673-719.

    On the obverse neck, in three-quarter view to the left, is the quadriga of Helios, surrounded by a white, yellow, and red nimbus. The god holds a whip in his right hand and is dressed in a long chiton. His presence is an appropriate symbol of renewal and re-birth on a funerary vase; if he is to be associated with the scene below, it may mean that the action there takes place in the morning, with the first rays of the sun revealing the body of the murdered man.

    On the reverse neck, Eros is seated on a flower, wearing bracelets, shoes, anklets, necklace, and sakkos; he holds a phiale in his left hand. Elaborate floral ornament and scrolling tendrils, high lighted with added white and yellow, surround both Helios and Eros. The composition with Eros recalls similar scenes on vases of the Alabastra Group and others associated with it; see “RVAp”, II, pls. 232 (5 and 8) and 233 (1-3). For the floral ornament, see the comments on cat. no. 21.

    There are two registers of elaborate palmettes under the handles. The latter have plastic female masks on the volutes and black swan’s heads on the shoulders. Springs of white laurel decorate the obverse handle flanges. A wreath of grape leaves and clusters runs around the foot.

    Above both pictures is a double band of egg-pattern. A band consisting of groups of stopt maeanders to left alternating with cross-squares circles the lower body. A band of egg-pattern circles the lip. Below the obverse lip are an ivy vine, a yellow bead-and-reel molding, and a laurel wreath with a central rosette. Below the reverse lip are a laurel wreath, a row of dots, and a band of rosettes.

    Excerpted from Padgett, ITALIAN VASE PAINTING in ITALY, #38

    Provenance

    By date unknown: said to be from Ceglie del Campo near Bari; by 1903: with Edward Perry Warren; purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, March 24, 1903

    Credit Line

    Francis Bartlett Donation of 1900

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 038.

    Dimensions

    Height: 124.6 cm (49 1/16 in.); diameter: 56 cm (22 1/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    03.804

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215C)

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Head of Aphrodite

    Roman
    Imperial Period, Antonine
    about A.D. 138–192

    Description

    Broken at base of neck. Upper part of skull missing by an oblique break from just above the forehead to below the crown on the back. Nose somewhat damaged. Hairstyle is a complexity of looped and dangling strands with some of the hair combed backward to a loose bun below her headband and some strands pulled up at the front, probably to be tied into a bowknot on top of her head. In addition, two long locks of hair fall down onto her shoulders.

    Scientific Analysis:

    Harvard Lab No. HI713: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.43 / delta18O -4.99, Attribution - Pentelikon, Justification - Fine grained marble.

    Provenance

    By 1901: with Edward Perry Warren; purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren in December 1901 with funds provided by Clement S. Houghton

    Credit Line

    Museum purchase with funds donated by Mr. Clement S. Houghton

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 159; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Other (Head only): 21 x 18 x 23 cm (8 1/4 x 7 1/16 x 9 1/16 in.) Other (Head on historic socle): 32 x 18 x 23 cm (12 5/8 x 7 1/16 x 9 1/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    01.8200

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens; top of the head made in separate piece of marble

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

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    Sculpture

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  • Head of Aphrodite ("The Bartlett Head" )

    Greek
    Late Classical or Early Hellenistic Period
    about 330–300 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    So-called Bartlett Head of Aphrodite, associated with the style of Praxiteles. Important and rare original example of late Classical or early Hellenistic sculpture. Neck is worked for insertion into a full length statue, now lost. Well preserved except for a small break at the tip of the nose.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Found in Athens; formerly in the possession of the late Mr. Pallis (according to L. D. Caskey, Catalogue of Greek and Roman Sculpture, no. 28); by 1903: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: Found opposite the Monasteri Rwy station, Athens); purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, March 24, 1903

    Credit Line

    Francis Bartlett Donation of 1900

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 055; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 108 (additional published references); Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 086.

    Dimensions

    Head without socle: 28.8 x 18.1 x 24.8 cm (11 5/16 x 7 1/8 x 9 3/4 in.) Head on socle: 42 cm (16 9/16 in) Historic socle: 13.8 x 13.8 cm (5 7/16 x 5 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    03.743

    Medium or Technique

    Parian marble

    On View

    Greek & Roman Sculpture Gallery (Gallery 211)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Mixing bowl (calyx krater) with the killing of Agamemnon

    Greek
    Early Classical Period
    about 460 B.C.
    the Dokimasia Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Both sides of this vase illustrate tragic scenes from the story of King Agamemnon’s return to Mycenae after the fall of Troy.

    While Agamemnon was away at war, his wife Klytemnestra took as her lover Agamemnon’s cousin Aegisthos. On the king’s return home, Aegisthos and Klytemnestra plotted to kill Agamemnon. In one scene, Aegisthos gets ready to plunge a sword into Agamemnon, wet from the bath and trapped in a net. Klytemnestra carries an ax to assist her lover. Three other women witness the horrific crime. These women are perhaps Chrysothemis and Elektra, Agamemnon’s younger and older daughters, and Kassandra, his slave.

    Following the first brutal murder, the honorable children of Klytemnestra and Agamemnon avenged the death of their father. Orestes, whipped to action by his sister Elektra, enters the palace to kill Aegisthos who was seated playing the lyre (barbitos). Elektra stands to the right encouraging her brother’s actions, while her mother Klytemnestra rushes in with a double axe aimed at her son’s head.

    The Aeolic columns under the handles suggest the palace of Agamemnon and Klytemnestra at Mycenae.

    Provenance

    By 1958: with Robert E. Hecht, Jr.; purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., September 18, 1963

    Credit Line

    William Francis Warden Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 066.

    Dimensions

    Height: 51 cm (20 1/16 in.); diameter: 51 cm (20 1/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    63.1246

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215C)

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    The Ancient World

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    Vessels

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  • Eros from a mirror with a stand

    Greek
    Classical Period
    about 470 B.C.

    Description

    The Eros was flying to the right and therefore came from the left side between mirror and figure stand, as if he were about to alight on Aphrodite’s shoulder. Missing right hand, right foot, and wings. There is a groove on the top of the head where the figure joined the mirror disc. Extremities and features are much worn.

    Provenance

    About 1919: acquired by Vassilios Ladoulis near his home in Kyparissia, Greece; inherited by his son, Theodore Ladoulis; gift of Theodore Ladoulis to MFA, April 10, 1969

    Credit Line

    Gift of Theodore Ladoulis in memory of Vassilios Ladoulis

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 355A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 122 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 7.3 cm (2 7/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    69.56

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    On View

    Greek Archaic Gallery (Gallery 113)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Tools and equipment, Cosmetic and medical

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  • Triple-bodied Hekate

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    A.D. 50–200

    Description

    Hecate wears Doric chiton with long peplos-like overfold, a wreath-like belt, a polos with three stars, and crescent on top. Two of the figures, with long tresses, hold snakes; the third held two torches. Brown patina; two attributes above polos, two snakeheads, and the two torches are missing. So also much of two of the feet.
    Hecate is a goddess of the earth, the underworld and the moon. She carries torches and snakes while stars and a lunar crescent ornament her headdress. She is generally associated with uncanny things and the ghost world and is worshipped at gateways and crossroads, which seem to be haunted the world over. Her triple body enables her to see along all lines of approach.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: said to have been found on the island of Aegina; by 1820s/1830s?: Fauvel Collection?, Athens (drawn by O. von Stackelberg as pl. 72 of Die Graeber des Hellenen, published in 1837); by date unknown: Azeez Khayat Collection; by 1963: with Susette Khayat, 505 Fifth Avenue, New York; purchased by MFA from Susette Khayat, January 8, 1964

    Credit Line

    Edwin E. Jack Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 104; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 120 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 17.6 cm (6 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    64.6

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    On View

    Greek Late Classical and Hellenistic Gallery (Gallery 212A)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Silenos; Roman copy based on a Greek prototype

    Roman
    Imperial Period, probably Antonine

    Description

    Broken away across the lower jaw and otherwise damaged. The Silenos wears a rolled fillet with grapes and leaves around his balding forehead. His polished, pointed ears have survived in relatively good condition.

    Provenance

    Before 1966: with K. J. Hewett, London; by 1966: Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr., Collection (first loaned to MFA as 7.66; later loaned to MFA as 173.67, 22.69, 41.1971 107.1972); 1973: Benjamin Rowland, Jr. Estate; bequest of Benjamin Rowland, Jr. to MFA, February 13, 1974

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Benjamin Rowland, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 165; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 25.5 cm (10 1/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1974.126

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Crystalline from the Aegean islands (?)

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

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    Sculpture

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  • Sarcophagus with triumph of Dionysos

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 215–225

    Description

    The god of wine and dramatic festivals, in full choral attitude, steps into a biga drawn by two Indian elephants with fringed cloths on their backs. He is supported by his companion the satyr Ampelos and attended by the complete Dionysiac train of Sileni, pans, satyrs, maenads, and the exotic animals of his triumph in India.

    The inscription reads M~VIBIO~M~FIL~LIBERALI~PRAET~M~VIBIVS~AGESILAVS~IVNIOR~NVTRICIO~SUO~FEC (“Marcus Vibius Agesilaus junior made (it) for Marcus Vibius Liberalis, son of Marcus, the praetor, his foster-father” ).

    The condition is, generally speaking, superb, with the small breaks, missing limbs, and absent attributes apparent from illustrations. The surfaces, particularly of the nude or seminude figures, retain their high polish. There are no restorations of the kind that ruin so many sarcophagi. The sections cracked or broken through have been carefully rejoined, and the missing pieces of the lid hardly detract from the visual sweep and rhythm of the triumphal procession. The three-volume corpus of Dionysiac sarcophagi reveals that very few of these monuments of Greek art in the Roman Empire have their original (or any) lids preserved in any form or condition.

    Inscription

    An inscription along the lower edge reads, "Marcus Vibius Agesilaus Junior made it (i.e. set up this monument?) for Marcus Liberalis, the son of Marcus, the Praetor, his tutor" or "who brought him up."

    Provenance

    By date unknown: collection of an international banker in northwest Europe; by 1972: with Miss Jeannette Brun, Dufourstrasse 119, Zurich 8008, Switzerland; purchased by MFA from Miss Jeannette Brun, June 7, 1972

    Credit Line

    William Francis Warden Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 244; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 113 (additional published references); Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 108-109.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 77.5 x 208cm (30 1/2 x 81 7/8in.) Other (Body): 59cm (23 1/4in.) Other (lid): 18.5cm (7 5/16in.) Case (Rolling steel pedestal with wooden skirts/plex-bonnet): 77.5 x 228.6 x 76.5 cm (30 1/2 x 90 x 30 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1972.650

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, from the island of Proconnesus in the Sea of Marmara near Istanbul

    On View

    Classical Roman Gallery (Gallery 213)

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    The Ancient World

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    Sculpture

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  • Two-handled jar (amphora)

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 540 B.C.
    the BMN (British Museum Nikosthenes) Painter

    Description

    Side A: Theseus killing the Minotaur.
    Theseus holds the Minotaur by the horn with his left hand and drives his sword into his rib cage with the right. The Minotaur sinks on his right knee, holding a stone in his upraised left hand. Behind Theseus stands a youth holding a spear. Behind the Minotaur stand a girl and a youth.
    Side B: The Dioskouroi riding into Olympus.
    They ride to left, each holding a spear. An eagle flies to left behind them. Poseidon holding his trident stands in front of the horses. Behind the horses come an old man holding a stick (Tyndareos?) and a boy carrying a wreath.
    Lid: pomegranate knob and patterns.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Hesperia Art, 2219 St. James Place, Philadelphia 3, Pa.; January 14, 1960: purchased by MFA from Hesperia Art for $ 4,000.00

    Credit Line

    Otis Norcross Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 07-08.

    Dimensions

    Height: 39.2 cm (15 7/16 in.); diameter: 22.5 cm (8 7/8 in.) diameter (lid) 7.2 cm.

    Accession Number

    60.1

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Carian Zeus

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period, perhaps Antonine

    Place of Manufacture: Asia Minor, Caria

    Description

    The bearded god has his hair done up in a knot behind. His pectoral and apron are represented only in front; at the back, his chiton flows from the shoulders to well below the ankles and feet in five large folds with deep grooves in between. His sandaled feet protrude from beneath the chiton below the apron in front. The base is in the form of a small, round plinth, and the attributes, fitted separately in the hands, are now missing. Light green patina with an earth encrustation. The ridges of drapery on the back have been cleaned with a wire brush.

    Provenance

    By 1967: with J. J. Klejman, 982 Madison Avenue, New York 10021 (said to be from a British collection); purchased by MFA from J. J. Klejman, June 28, 1967.

    Credit Line

    Seth K. Sweetser Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 124; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 120 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 10.5 cm (4 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    67.730

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Mixing bowl (volute-krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 365–355 B.C.
    The Iliupersis Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    A: A group of divine or mythological beings is assembled in a garden setting. In the center a woman wearing a chiton, himation, and sphendone is seated to the left by a “reflecting pool” with a white border. She holds up a mirror in her right hand, as a wreathed youth with a cloak about his lower body and left arm leans on the staff in his left hand and offers her a necklace dangling from his right hand. The staff and necklace are white, as are the shoes, bracelets, earrings, and necklace worn by the woman. Below the woman and the youth, the terrain is indicated by groundlines of white dots. At the youth’s side is the diminutive Eros, wearing a wreath and carrying a phiale full of offerings in his left hand. A second woman holding a white and yellow hydria in her left hand stands to the right; she is dressed and adorned like the seated woman, but her shoes are not white. A tree with round, white leaves grows in the center. In the upper register, seated at left and right, are a woman with a dove on her knee and a youth holding a laurel branch; their position and attributes suggest Aphrodite and Apollo. The goddess wears a chiton and himation, shoes with white detailing, white bracelets and necklace, and a fillet partly covered by her hair. With her right hand she holds the veil behind her head. Apollo wears shoes and a himation; a white wreath is in his hair. A white disk quartered with yellow chevrons floats in the field by Apollo’s head, and there are rosettes above the tree and at the upper left.

    The necklace recalls the bribing of Eriphyle by Polyneikes, who in Attic and Lucanian representations is normally shown leaning on his staff (see LIMC, III, 2, pls. 606-608). Paris and Helen are perhaps less likely possibilities, although the two gods observing the couple were Trojan partisans, and the presence of Eros suggests a love interest. E. Vermeule (in Festschrift Hanfmann, p. 181, note 18) was reminded of the Garden of the Hesperides, but neither Herakles nor the serpent is present.

    B: A female stands in the center holding a wreath in her right hand and a cista in her left. On either side of her are two nude youths, the left one seated. Rows of white dots mark the ground below each figure. The woman wears a chiton, white bracelets and earrings, a necklace with white pendants, and a sphendone with radiate white leaves. The youths carry white staffs and wear white fillets. The seated one leans on his cloak, which wraps around to cover his loins. The one at the right has a fillet draped over his extended right hand and his cloak wrapped around his left arm. In the field above are a fillet and other filling ornaments: a “window”, a quadrated disk, and a phiale. On the ground by the woman’s feet is a cista decorated with maeanders and chevrons and holding their eggs.

    On the obverse neck is a female head in three-quarter view, growing from acanthus. She wears a white radiate diadem and earrings. Spiraling yellow tendrils and flowers spring from the white-high-lighted acanthus to frame the head. The neck on the reverse is decorated with a complex of palmettes and tendrils. The volutes have mold-made masks representing wide-eyed female heads: white, with features in red-brown dilute glaze. The handles terminate in plastic swan’s heads on the shoulders. The palmettes below the handles are particularly rich in conception and execution and are linked by tendrils that enclose the palmettes framing both scenes. There is dotted egg-pattern on the outer rim between the handles.

    Below the obverse rim, on the upper register, is a red-figure ivy vine; on the lower register is a laurel wreath with berries. On the reverse, the ivy is black on a reserved ground, and the laurel wreath is of a different and less fine variety (one-dimensional). A band consisting of groups of linked maeanders to left alternating with saltire-squares circles the lower body. On the shoulders between the handles is a broad band of tongues; on the obverse, these surmount a band of egg-pattern.

    The Iliupersis Painter was a prolific and innovative artist, active just before midcentury, whose work set the standard for the large, Ornate-style vases of the second half of the century: volute-kraters with plastic masks on the volutes, increased polychromy, complex floral ornament, multilevel compositions, mourners surrounding funerary naiskoi and stelei. The female head in a floral setting on the neck of this vase is one of the earliest examples of this motif, common on volute-kraters of the second half of the century. See the extensive discussion by Trendall and Cambitoglou; RVAp, II, 646-649. In RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 46, they compare the drawing of this face to that of a male head, perhaps Orpheus, on a volute-krater in Antibes (ibid., p. 47, no. 8/11a). For the Iliupersis painter, see A .D. Trendall and A. Cambitoglou, in Etudes et Travaux 13 (1983), pp. 405-413. For the masks on the handles, see L. Giuliani, in M. Schmidt, ed., Kanon: Festschrift Ernst Berger (AntK, Beiheft 15, Basel, 1988), pp. 159-165. Elaborate floral work like that around the head on the neck has been associated with the Sicyonian painter Pausias, who flourished in the second quarter of the fourth century and was said to have developed the art of flower painting (Pliny, Natural History, 35.123-125); see RVAp, I, pp. 189-190).

    (text from Vase-Painting in Italy, catalogue entry no. 21)

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Robert E. Hecht, Jr. Collection; gift to MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., March 11, 1970

    Credit Line

    Gift of Robert E. Hecht, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 021.

    Dimensions

    Height with handles: 61 cm (24 in.); diameter body: 33.7 cm (13 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.235

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Zeus

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    1st–2nd century A.D.

    Description

    Statuette of Zeus wearing a chiton, with short sleeves, and an ample himation draped over the left shoulder and down the left side, front and back. He also wears sandals and stands on a plinth. Right hand and lower arm are missing, as is scepter formerly held in left hand. Red, green and brown patina. He probably held an libation bowl in his right hand.

    For similar costume, pose, and attributes see SNG, von Aulock for Zeus on a big bronze coin of Geta minted at Keramos in Caria..

    Provenance

    By 1959: with Mathias Komor, 19 East 71st Street, New York 21; purchased by MFA from Mathias Komor, May 14, 1959, for $ 300.00

    Credit Line

    John Michael Rodocanachi Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 123; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 120 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 11.8 cm (4 5/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    59.298

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Two-handled jar (amphora) depicting the Judgment of Paris and the recovery of Helen

    Greek
    Late Archaic Period
    about 510–500 B.C.
    the Group of Würzburg 199

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Side A: Judgment of Paris. Hermes, with a dog walking beside him, leads Hera, holding a long scepter, Athena, fully-armed, and Aphrodite.
    Side B: Scene from the Iliupersis. Menelaos walking right, looks back and turns to seize veiled Helen by the edge of her himation while threatening her with his sword. Behind her, a warrior (Agamemnon?) carrying two spears and a shield walks left, looking back.

    Provenance

    By 1847: Rome art market (published in F. W. E. Gerhard, Auserlesene griechische Vasenbilder, III, Berlin, 1847, pl. 171); date unknown: Lord Elgin Collection, Broomhall, Fifeshire, Scotland; date unknown: London, Spink and Son (recorded by J. D. Beazley in ABV, Oxford, 1956, p. 691, no. 78bis as: London Market-Spink); by date unknown with Münzen und Medaillen A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel, Switzerland; June 8, 1960: purchased by MFA from Münzen und Medaillen A.G. for $ 1,200.00

    Credit Line

    Seth Kettell Sweetser Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 45.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 44 x 14.6 cm (17 5/16 x 5 3/4 in.) Other (H): 27.7cm (10 7/8in.)

    Accession Number

    60.790

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    On View

    Krupp Gallery (Gallery 215A)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Candelabrum base decorated with figures of Nike

    Roman
    Early Imperial Period, Augustan
    about 31 B.C.–A.D. 14

    Description

    The sculptured compositions of each side of this triangular base are identical. A figure of Nike or Victoria, winged, wearing a long chiton with short overfold, flies down from the left to the right and pours a libation from a ewer or oinochoe onto a flat plate. This design is set in a series of simple moldings, partly preserved on the bottom and two of the vertical edges.
    Bases such as this were popular in the Roman world, especially in Italy, in the Julio-Claudian through Hadrianic periods of the empire. They supported decorative candelabra or, equally often, merely shafts carved to imitate a vine stem or tree trunk and terminating in a finial such as a pine cone. Such objects were set around the gardens or courtyards of Roman villas in much the same fashion as iron deer or Chinese stone lanterns graced the grounds of estates in America at the turn of this century. Hadrian’s villa at Tivoli in the second century A.D. possessed many lavish examples of such decorative art. The reliefs of this base are Neo-Attic in style. The Nikai even catch something of the composition and spirit of a figure from the balustrade of the temple to Nike on the Acropolis of Athens.
    The outer edges are mostly broken away or damaged. The surfaces are corroded and worn, but have a yellow-gray patina.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.520 / delta18O -4.867, Attribution - Pentelikon.

    Provenance

    By 1914: with Galerie Helbig, Sammlung von antiken Glasern, Terrakotten, Marmor Skulpturen und Bronzen aus dem Besitze von Fr. D. Kirchner-Schwarz, Beirut (June 22-23, 1914); by 1936: loaned to MFA by Miss Mary C. Wheelwright; bequest of Miss Mary C. Wheelwright to MFA, October 8, 1959

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Miss Mary C. Wheelwright

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 300; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 113 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 39 cm (15 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    59.687

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Two-handled jar (amphora)

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 530 B.C.
    Painter Circle of the Lysippides Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Athens, Attica, Greece

    Description

    Side A: Bridal pair in a chariot, accompanied by Apollo playing the kithara, Artemis with two torches, and Hermes. A deer stands next to Artemis and a dog wearing a collar next to Hermes.
    Side B: Poseidon carrying a trident and a small dolphin, a panther wearing a halter, Aphrodite (or Leto) reaching forward to touch Apollo’s back,and Apollo wearing an ivy wreath, all face toward Artemis, her right hand raised in greeting. At her side, a fawn.

    Provenance

    By 1948: Essex Institute Collection, Salem, Massachusetts (with an unknown provenance); loaned to MFA, February 10, 1965; purchased by MFA from the Essex Institute, March 13, 1968

    Credit Line

    John Michael Rodocanachi Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 13.

    Dimensions

    Height: 55 cm (21 5/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    68.46

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Two-handled jar (amphora)

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 540–530 B.C.
    Close to Exekias

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    Side A: The Dioskouroi harness a biga.
    Helen stands at the left, raising her left hand in a gesture of farewell. The Greek inscription ‘Helene’ (HELENE) above her head. Polydeukes steadies the chariot with his left foot. Behind his head and back the inscription ‘Polydeuces’ ([P]OLYDEUKES) in retrograde. Kastor wears a long white robe. Inscription above his head, ‘Kastor’ (KASTOR). A groom, Aischines, holds Simos, the off-horse. The inscription ‘Aischines’ (ASCHINES) above the figure’s head, and the Greek inscription ‘Simos’ (SIMOS) underneath the horse’s head. A second groom, Eurylochos, holds the near-horse. To the left of his legs the inscription in retrograde ‘Eurylochos’ (EURYLOCHOS). Inscription ([?]IOS) above the horse’s head that is probably part of its name. To the left of the horse’s front legs, the inscription ‘Kason is handsome’ (KAS^ON KAL^OS) in retrograde.

    Side B: Dionysos, ivy-wreathed and seated on a folding stool, drinks from a kantharos in the midst of a grapevine populated with twelve diminutive satyrs. Inscription above and to the right of his head, ‘Dionysos’ (DIONYSOS).

    Inscription

    From Left to Right Side A: ΗΕΛΕΝΕ [Π]ΟΛΥΔΕΥΚΕS (Retr.) ΑΙSΧΙΝΕS (Retr.) SΙΜΟS ΚΑSΤΟΡ [?]ΙΟS ΚΑΣΟΝ ΚΑΛΟΣ (Retr) ΕΥΡΥΛΟΧΟS (Retr) Side B: ΔΙΟΝΥΣΟΣ

    Provenance

    By 1950: with Münzen und Medaillen, A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel, Switzerland (according to the purchase declaration on the invoice for Customs, the vase had been purchased by Münzen und Medaillen A.G. from Jean Dubois in Paris in 1950); purchased by MFA from Münzen und Medaillen, A.G., June 19, 1963

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Residuary Fund and Francis Bartlett Donation of 1900

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 12; Highlights: Classical Art (MFA), p. 035.

    Dimensions

    Height: 51.4 cm (20 1/4 in.); diamater: 33 cm (13 in.)

    Accession Number

    63.952

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215B)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Mirror with Minerva, Venus, and Juno

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 100–200

    Description

    The scene may be part of the Judgement of Paris. Athena, Aphrodite, and Hera (?) are seen in a landscape setting. Athena, in helmet and chiton, holds her spear and rests against shield and aegis. A nude goddess (Hera?) sits on the former on the balustrade of the steps (an altar?) where Aphrodite sits. Aphrodite, holding a sprig of pomegranates (?) has a kalathos on her left arm, who rests her left arm against a pillar. Behind Athena, an owl sits on the rocks. In the area below the groundline are two birds flanked by a torch and a mirror. Rolled fillets and an egg-and-dart molding enframe the scene. Extensive remains of gilding. Rim of the lower half is broken off. The backing with the reliefs has been mounted on a disc which has a polished outer surface.

    A scorpion crawls toward Athena’s owl. Below the ground line are a mirror, a basket of fruit, and a torch.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Robert E. Hecht, Jr.; purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., May 14, 1969

    Credit Line

    Theodora Wilbour Fund in memory of Zoë Wilbour

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 400A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 123 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Diameter: 16.4 cm (6 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    69.71

    Medium or Technique

    Gilt bronze

    On View

    Krupp Gallery (Gallery 215A)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Tools and equipment, Cosmetic and medical

    More Info
  • Two-handled jar (amphora)

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    510–500 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Athens, Attica, Greece

    Description

    Side A: Herakles and Apollo struggle for the tripod, a fawn between them. Herakles strides to right and looks back, pulling the tripod by one of its legs with his right hand and raising his club in his left. Behind him, Apollo reaches forward grasping a leg of the tripod with each hand. At left Artemis reaches to grasp the upper leg of the tripod. At right Athena holds a spear in her left hand and reaches for the tripod with her right.
    Side B: Herakles in combat with the Nemean lion flanked by Athena at the right and Iolaos at the left. Iolaos holds a club in his right hand. Athena has a spear and round shield.
    Palmette-lotus chain on neck, lotus bud chain above rays. Palmettes under handles, tongues on shoulders. Body badly misfired. Incising done when vase was too dry, flaking off dry glaze along the edge.

    Provenance

    By 1965: with an English dealer; 1965: with Sotheby & Co., 34 & 35 New Bond Street, London, W1 (Sotheby & Co. Sale, November 29, 1965, lot 134); by 1967: with D. J. Crowther Ltd., (D. J. Crowther Ltd., 76 New Bond Street, London, W.1, List No. 1, 1967, no. 8); 1967: purchased from D. J. Crowther Ltd. by Charles Lipson; by 1969: purchased by George Warton from Charles Lipson; purchased by MFA from George Warton, March 11, 1970

    Credit Line

    Frederick Brown Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 42.

    Dimensions

    Height: 42 cm (16 9/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.69

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Two-handled jar (amphora) depicting Achilles ambushing Troilos

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 530 B.C.
    Painter The Painter of the Vatican Mourner

    Place of Manufacture: Athens, Attica, Greece

    Description

    Side A: The ambush of Troilus by Achilles. Troilus rides toward a fountain where Polyxena is filling a hydria from the lion-head spout. Behind him, a bearded attendant and a dog. Achilles, fully armed, crouches behind fountain and tree. Bird in flight above.
    Side B: Departure of a Warrior. A warrior carrying a shield and spear steps toward his horse which is led by a groom who rides the second of the pair. On either side, a man stands to the right.

    Provenance

    By 1956: Dr. Samuel Schweizer Collection, Arlesheim (Beazley, ABV); by 1969: with Münzen und Medaillen, A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel (Münzen und Medaillen, A.G., auction 40, December 13, 1969, lot 68); purchased by MFA from Münzen und Medaillen, A.G., January 14, 1970

    Credit Line

    William E. Nickerson Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    CVA Boston 1, pl. 06.

    Dimensions

    Height: 43.5 cm (17 1/8 in.); diameter: 19.6 cm (7 11/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.8

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Black Figure

    On View

    Krupp Gallery (Gallery 215A)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Oil flask (lekythos) in the form of a sphinx

    Greek
    Late Classical Period
    about 350–325 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Athens, Attica, Greece

    Description

    Mouth and handle of vase in black glaze. Color well-preserved on vase and figure. Over white ground on sphinx, red-brown lips and hair, yellow braid, blue wings with yellow edge.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Charles Deering Collection; by date unknown: Barbara Deering Danielson Collection; gift of Barbara Deering Danielson to MFA, December 8, 1982

    Credit Line

    Gift of Barbara Deering Danielson

    Details

    Dimensions

    Height x width x length:11.8 x 3 x 6.5 cm (4 5/8 x 1 3/16 x 2 9/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1982.655

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Figural

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Oil flask (lekythos)

    Greek
    Classical Period
    about 470 B.C.
    Painter the Nikon Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Athens, Attica, Greece

    Description

    Athena, in right profile, holding her high-crested helmet and a shield with her horse as a device.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: said to be from Gela; by 1967: perhaps with a New York dealer; 1967: with Sotheby & Co., 34 & 35, New Bond Street, London, W.1 (Sotheby & Co. auction, November 27, 1967, lot 158); date unknown: Hesperia Art Bulletin 47, no. A 26; purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., September 17, 1969

    Credit Line

    Edwin E. Jack Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Height: 38.1 cm (15 in.)

    Accession Number

    69.1053

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Fragment of a mixing bowl (krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 380–370 B.C.
    Painter the Adolphseck Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    ITALIAN VASE PAINTING in ITALY, #14 (61.112)
    Fragment of a Bell-Krater
    Attributed to the Adolphseck Painter
    about 380-370 B.C.
    The concert of Apollo. Zeus is reclining to the left on a groundline of cream-colored dots, his left arm and side preserved. His himation is wrapped around his waist, and he holds his yellow eagle-topped scepter in the crook of his left arm. Nike or Eros is at the upper right (only wing tip preserved), carrying an embroidered, tasseled fillet. Apollo stands below them at the center, wearing a bordered cape, a broad belt (yellow with black dots), and a richly decorated musician’s chiton with long sleeves, embroidered with palmettes, key-pattern, laurel wreaths, and egg-and-dart. Such a rich costume is not inappropriate for a god, but it may also reflect the influence of theatrical costume or the festal gowns worn by mortal citharodes. The god’s face is in three-quarter view, and the artist has taken pains with the relief lines of his curly hair and the faint suggestions of budding sideburns. He holds his broad, white kithara erect by the strap above his left wrist, stopping the strings with the finger of his left hand as he strikes them with the plektron in his right hand. The strings are brown where they cross the body of the kithara.
    The Adolphseck Painter is named for a vase in Schloss Fasanerie, Adolphseck (inv. 179: RVAp, I, p. 72, no. 4/51). He was a close associate of the Schiller and Prisoner Painters and like them was a follower of the Tarporley Painter and worked in the Plain style. He painted mainly bell-kraters, most of which have Dionysiac scenes.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Christoph Clairmont Collection; January 11, 1961: purchased by MFA from Dr. Christoph Clairmont for $ 950.00 (the total price for 61.110-61.113) with funds from the bequest of Miss Grace Nelson (recorded as Bequest of Miss Grace Nelson)

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Miss Grace Nelson

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 014.

    Dimensions

    Height x width: 18 x 15 cm (7 1/16 x 5 7/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    61.112

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215C)

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • A maenad holding a wine pitcher and Dionysos with panther skin

    Roman
    Imperial Period, Hadrianic
    A.D. 117–138

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

    Description

    The marble relief depicts a maenad identified by the fawn skin over her left shoulder and the giant fennel staff (thyrsos) in her left hand, which is partially concealed by the torso of the male figure. She holds a wine pitcher her right hand as if to pour its contents into the two-handled cup (kantharos) held by Dionysos who carries the skin of a leopard over his left arm, waits to receive his drink from his special vessel, suggesting that the maenad is taking part in the ritual entertainment of the god (theoxenia). From myth, we know that Erigone, the daughter of Ikarios – the first man to learn the skill of wine-making from Dionysos – gave hospitality (xenia) to the god, for which she was gifted a fawn skin, thereby initiating her into the Dionysiac cult.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI749: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.46 / delta18O -6.41, Attribution - Pentelikon, Justification - White, fine grained marble.

    Provenance

    According to MFA Sculpture in Stone and Bronze, entry no. 32: from about 1949 to 1960 seen at Spink and Son, London, where it seems to have been since before the Second World War, when it belonged to the British branch of an old aristocratic Sicilian family; between 1960 and 1978: in the possession of, or on consignment to, various collectors and dealers in London, New York, and Tokyo; by 1978: with Münzen und Medaillen A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel (Münzen und Medaillen A.G., Catalogue of 1978 Basel Antiquities Fair, no. 310 [said to have been in the Avery Brundage Collection for a time]); by 1983: with Sotheby Parke Bernet Inc., 1334 York Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10021; purchased by MFA from Sotheby Parke Bernet, Inc., January 18, 1984

    Credit Line

    Gift of Moses Alpers, Mrs. Harvey H. Bundy, Mrs. William H. Claflin III, Joseph Edinburgh, Mrs. Laurence B. Ellis, Mr. and Mrs. De Coursey Fales, Jr., Dr. Ernest Kahn, Dr. Josephine Murray, Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr., Adrian Vermeule, Mr. and Mrs. Philip Weld, Dr. Leonard Wolsky by their contributions to the Classical Department Curator's Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 032.

    Dimensions

    Overall: 79 x 58cm (31 1/8 x 22 13/16in.) Mount (3/16" thick contoured steel base plate/two side securement tabs): 0.5 x 65.6 x 10.2 cm (3/16 x 25 13/16 x 4 in.)

    Accession Number

    1984.19

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215C)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Statuette of a paternal deity, possibly Jupiter

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    2nd century A.D.

    Description

    A statuette of a divinity (Jupiter?)–a bearded man with right arm and hand raised, perhaps once holding a spear or sceptre; his left hand is extended out in a gesture of salutation. Combines gestures of address, command and benediction. Original patination. some small holes and casting flaws.

    Provenance

    By 1989: with Jean-Luc Chalmin, 8 Groom Place, London, SW1X 7BA, England (said to come from Spain); purchased by MFA from Jean-Luc Chalmin, June 21, 1989

    Credit Line

    Frank B. Bemis Fund

    Details

    Accession Number

    1989.191

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Statuette of Helios, the sun god

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period, Antonine
    about A.D. 150–190

    Place of Manufacture: Asia Minor

    Description

    Helios is conceived in terms of the image of Alexander the Great (356-323 B.C.); the sun god is young and beardless but powerful, with a lion-like mane of hair. Like Alexander, he was imagined as fast-moving and far-seeing. Beams of light, of which only one remains, originally radiated from his head. Helios traveled through the heavens in a chariot, and he probably once held a whip in his left hand.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: possibly from Asia Minor; said to have belonged to a Greek family of Smyrna that migrated to England (other works in the family's collection said to have been found with Helios: bronze statuettes of Hygieia, Isis, and Asklepios - the latter was the cover illustration of Sotheby's, NY, auction catalogue of 29 Nov. 1989); date unknown: probably with Torkom Demirjian, Ariadne Gallery, 970 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10021; by 1989, collection of Lawrence and Barbara Fleischman, New York; by 1995: with Sotheby's, 1334 York Avenue, New York, NY 10021 (auction, December 8, 1995, lot 100, cover illustration of the auction catalogue); purchased by MFA from Sotheby's as an unsold lot, December 13, 1995; purchase confirmed by MFA trustees, January 24, 1996

    Credit Line

    Frank B. Bemis Fund, William E. Nickerson Fund, Otis Norcross Fund and Helen B. Sweeny Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    18.9 cm (7 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1996.3

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Fragment of sarcophagus lid with Eros riding a sea griffin

    Roman
    Imperial Period, Late Antonine to Severan
    about A.D. 180–210

    Description

    Eros is shown in three-quarter profile, his left hand holds rein leading from griffin’s beak as he sits atop the griffin, steering him to the right.
    Broken off from original behind the head of Eros, across his chest, under left arm and across griffin’s neck. Fillet moldings at top and right preserved, also start of back of mask at right corner.

    Provenance

    By date unknown, with Jacques Schulman B. V., Keizersgracht 448, Amsterdam, List 225, May 1983, no. 73; by September, 1983: Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III Collection; gift of Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III to MFA, October 12, 1983

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III in the name of Cornelius Adrian Comstock Vermeule

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 035.

    Dimensions

    Height x width: 15.5 x 27 cm (6 1/8 x 10 5/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1983.404

    Medium or Technique

    Marble

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Oil flask (squat lekythos)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 360–350 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Apulia, Italy

    Description

    On the body, Eros advances toward an altar at the right, holding a phiale full of white offerings in his left hand. He has bracelets on each arm and a fillet on his head, all in white. A single offering, possibly an egg, sits on the altar. Compare the composition on the reverse of a pelike, catalogue no. 24. There is a palmette beneath the handle and one on either side of it. Rays circle the lower neck. The groundline is a simple reserved stripe. The underside of the foot and the fillet between the foot and body are painted with added red.
    The figures and props seem related to the Dijon and Iliupersis Painters (Herrmann). The roundel with seven dots (a patera?) among the palmettes on the reverse is found on several lesser works of this circle. For the dotted roundel, see RVAp, I, pls. 70, 4; 74, 4; 92, 7-8.

    (text from Vase-Painting In Italy, catalogue entry no. 22)

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Charles Deering Collection; by date unknown: Barbara Deering Danielson Collection; gift of Barbara Deering Danielson to MFA, December 8, 1982

    Credit Line

    Gift of Barbara Deering Danielson

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 022.

    Dimensions

    Height: 10.7 cm (4 3/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1982.658

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Head of Athena; Roman copy based on a Greek original

    Greco-Roman
    Imperial Period, Flavian to Antonine

    Description

    This is the head and neck (broken off) of a once-very-good replica of the Athena known as the Athena or the Minerva Giustiani, from the famous copy long in the Braccio Nuovo of the Musei Vaticani.
    The end of the helmet’s visor, the nose, the lips, and the chin are restored. The surfaces are very worn, and they have a grayish-yellow combination of deposit and weathering on them. The top rear of the helmet has been broken away, and there is a large dowel hole in the break or old cutting. There is also a large, round dowel hole, with a lead filling, in the lower back of the helmet, as if the head had once belonged to a pedimental group.
    The drilling and cutting of the flowing locks of hair below the helmet behind the left ear indicate that this copy was fashioned in the Flavian to the Antonine periods of the Roman Empire.

    Provenance

    By 1971: with Jerome M. Eisenberg, 44 East 82nd Street, New York, N.Y. 10028 (purchased by him from a Persian dealer in New York); purchased from Jerome M. Eisenberg by Fred M. Richman; gift of Fred M. Richman to MFA, December 1971

    Credit Line

    Gift of Fred M. Richman

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 150; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 38 cm (14 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1971.782

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, very crystalline

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Head of Hermes

    Greco-Roman
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 100–150 (after a Greek 4th century prototype)

    Description

    Head and most of neck of Hermes wearing a petasos (without wings). Roman copy of a Greek prototype of around 350 B.C.
    Nose (end at break), lips, and chin have been restored in plaster.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI740: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.39 / delta18O -4.61, Attribution - Pentelikon, Justification - Fine grained marble.

    Provenance

    By 1971: Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr. Collection (first loaned to MFA, May 3, 1971); by 1973: Benjamin Rowland, Jr. Estate; by 1974: Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr., Collection; gift of Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr., to MFA, November 13, 1974

    Credit Line

    Benjamin and Lucy Rowland Collection

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 157; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 28 cm (11 in.)

    Accession Number

    1974.522

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

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    Sculpture

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  • Two-handled cup (skyphos) with Bacchic scene

    Roman
    Early Imperial Period
    A.D. 1–30

    Description

    Two handled wine cup (skyphos) with traces of gold leaf on surface. In repoussé, are scenes related to Bacchic (Dionysos) ritual. In the center of one side is a herm of Priapus, a rustic god of fertility, whose obtrusive penis was removed in antiquity. Nearby is another small herm that stands on a colonnette close to the right handle. The scene is set outdoors, and a curtain, portable altar, and pillar with basket of wine cups are present. Bacchic theater masks are present as is a child bringing a goat for sacrifice.

    On the opposite side at left is a flowering tree. In front, a child brings a cock to fight while on right are a satyr herm, incense burner and ritual vessels on an altar. There is a fighting cock below. On the handles and foot is a delicate floral decoration. Floral shrubs and theatrical masks flank the handles, and a filleted pine-cone thyrsus angles right from side 1 to side 2. The smooth liner of the bowl is intact; only a few tiny losses are present.

    Inscribed under the foot are the letters SISIMIS, possibly the owner’s name.

    Provenance

    Early 1950s, said to have been sold by Kenneth John Hewett (dealer, b. 1919 - d. 1994), London, to Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Hecht, Sr. and, in 1959, passed by inheritance to their son, Robert E. Hecht, Jr., Boston; 1997, sold by Robert Hecht to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 25, 1997)

    Credit Line

    William Francis Warden Fund, Frank B. Bemis Fund, John H. and Ernestine Payne Fund and William E. Nickerson Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Height: 11.1 cm (4 3/8 in.); diameter: 10.1 cm (4 in.); width: 16.8 cm (6 5/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1997.83

    Medium or Technique

    Silver, with traces of gold leaf

    On View

    Classical Roman Gallery (Gallery 213)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
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  • Aphrodite

    Greco-Roman
    Late Hellenistic or Imperial Period
    1st century B.C. to A.D.

    Description

    The tresses, head, and upper part of the neck were evidently made separately and attached (the former into grooves on the shoulders, the latter with a pin). Arms and legs were probably pinned on with iron dowels. One such small dowel remains in the start of the support against the lower left thigh, above the knee. This support probably took the form of an urn with the goddess’ robe thrown across it. There are irregular breaks at all extremities. The surfaces have been carefully cleaned..

    Provenance

    By late 1920s: Aimée Lamb Collection (acquired from a private collection [E. P. Warren?]); 1962: loaned to MFA by Aimée Lamb (76.62); gift of Aimée Lamb to MFA, October 8, 1975

    Credit Line

    Gift of Miss Aimée Lamb

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 178A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 17.5 cm (6 7/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1975.647

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Greek island

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Triple Hekate

    Roman
    Late Republican or Early Imperial Period
    about 50 B.C.–A.D. 50

    Description

    The ensemble comes from a statue of the triple-bodied Hekate, a central-Greek divinity with Underworld connotations, a being sometimes thought of as a manifestation of Artemis as goddess of the night and the crossroads. The work is Archaistic in that it represents an attempt by a sculptor working about the time of Augustus (27 B.C. - A.D. 14), or slightly later, to create a statue with reminiscences of Athenian style in the generation before the Persian Wars, that is, around 520 B.C. The hair is far from Archaic, being made modern in the late Hellenistic sense. The crown rising between the three heads may recall the headdress of a Hekate of the fifth century B.C. for the sculptor Alkamenes among others created such images in Athens and other parts of Greece.
    The faces are damaged and worn, as is the top of the polos; otherwise, the surfaces are roughly as carved.

    Provenance

    By date unknown:Edward Perry Warren collection; around 1928: presented by Edward Perry Warren to William J. Young of the MFA Research Laboratory; gift of William J. Young to MFA, November 12, 1959

    Credit Line

    Gift of William J. Young

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 192; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 13 cm (5 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    59.846

    Medium or Technique

    Marble

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Hydria handle

    Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 550–530 B.C.

    Description

    Handle of hydria (vertical). At top, two lions; at lower end, two rams. Below the rams, Medusa mask. Patina pale dull green. Lower part corroded.
    Comparanda: Almost identical piece found at Kaloletsi near Olympia; see Daux BCH 92 (1968) p. 826, fig. 23.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: Bought in Athens.); purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, December 1901

    Credit Line

    Museum purchase with funds donated by contribution

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 413; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 124 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 20.8 cm (8 3/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    01.7474

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Silenus

    Greek
    Hellenistic Period
    3rd–2nd century B.C.

    Description

    Silenus stands in dramatic pose, with his feet apart and his right hand with open palm brought up to his shoulder. The missing left hand was extended. He is nude, except for a woolen cloth wrapped around his waist and knotted in front.

    Provenance

    By 1960: with Mathias Komor, 19 East 71st Street, New York 21; February 11, 1960: purchased by MFA from Mathias Komor for $ 850.00

    Credit Line

    Gift of J. J. Dixwell, by exchange

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 078.

    Dimensions

    Height: 12.5 cm (4 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    60.41

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215B)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Plaque with bee goddess

    Greek, East Greek
    Orientalizing Period
    640–630 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Rhodes, Kameiros

    Description

    Rectangular gold plaque, repoussé technique. The “Bee Artemis.” Piece broken from lower edge.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: W. H. Forman Collection; inherited from him by Mrs. Burt and then, about 1889, by A. H. Browne; by 1899: with Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 13 Wellington Strand, London, W.C. (sale of the Forman collection, June 19-22, lot 397, partial; said to have come from Kameiros, Rhodes); 1899: with Edward Perry Warren; 1899: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 32,500.00 (this is the total price for MFA 99.338-99.542)

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Height: 3.2 cm (1 1/4 in.); width: 2 cm (13/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    99.396

    Medium or Technique

    Electrum, repoussé

    Not On View

    Collections

    Jewelry, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Jewelry / Adornment

    More Info
  • Plaque with nature goddess (Artemis?)

    Greek, East Greek
    Orientalizing Period
    640–630 B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Greece, Rhodes, Kameiros

    Description

    Rectangular gold plaque, repoussé technique. The “Oriental Artemis” holding a small lion in each hand. Upper right corner gone.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: W. H. Forman Collection; inherited from him by Mrs. Burt and then, about 1889, by A. H. Browne; by 1899: with Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 13 Wellington Strand, London, W.C. (sale of the Forman collection, June 19-22, lot 397, partial; said to have come from Kameiros, Rhodes); 1899: with Edward Perry Warren; 1899: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 32,500.00 (this is the total price for MFA 99.338-99.542)

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    3.7 x 2 cm (1 7/16 x 13/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    99.392

    Medium or Technique

    Electrum, repoussé

    Not On View

    Collections

    Jewelry, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Jewelry / Adornment

    More Info
  • Tridrachm of Ephesos with Herakles strangling snakes

    Greek
    Classical Period
    394–387 B.C.

    Mint: Ephesos, Ionia

    Description

    Obverse: Infant Herakles strangling two snakes.
    Inscription in Greek.
    Reverse: Bee.
    Inscription in Greek.

    Provenance

    By late 1950s or early 1960s: with Robert E. Hecht, Jr., who had acquired the tridrachm in London (Spink & Son); March 22, 2000: purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr.

    Credit Line

    Theodora Wilbour Fund in memory of Zoë Wilbour

    Details

    Dimensions

    Diameter: 22 mm. Weight: 11.31 gm. Die Axis: 11

    Accession Number

    2000.551

    Medium or Technique

    Silver

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Numismatics, Coins

    More Info
  • Funerary vase (lekanis)

    Greek, South Italian
    Early Hellenistic Period
    Early 3rd century B.C.

    Place of Manufacture: Centuripe, Sicily, Italy

    Description

    ITALIAN VASE PAINTING in ITALY, #150 , p. 221
    Lekanis
    Early 3rd century B.C.
    The handle-zone is decorated with applied relief consisting of a central head of Medusa flanked by a floral scroll populated with tiny Erotes. A bead-and-reel molding defines the lower border. The background is pink, and the vines and upper and lower borders are gilded. Medusa has an idealized face, a pair of wings on her head, and pendant earrings. Her face is beige, her eyes white with black irises. Her hair and earrings are gilded, and her wings pink and blue. The strap handles, with their angular flanges, are pink with a gold stripe. The lower body is painted with large petals, turning the body into a kind of lotus. The front row of petals is blue below and pink above. A second row of petals behind and between them is red below and beige above. The black background above the tips of the petals continues on the reverse of the lower body, which is entirely black. The foot is white, and the fillet above it is gilded.
    The rim of the lid is painted with broad pink leaves outlined in black on a white ground; above this, in front, is a plastic bead-and-reel molding. The complex knob has a pink, egg-shaped finial, with five yellow, upright, plastic leaves (one missing) above a yellow, plastic bead-and-reel molding. The shaft below is painted with pink, white, and yellow stripes, and below this is a large flange with an egg-and-dart molding painted pink and beige.
    The painting on the conical, main zone of the lid is so badly damaged that only the basic composition can be reconstructed. The scene comprises two female servants who hold a pink object with vertical projections, perhaps a radiate stephane or a large and elaborate hat, over the head of a seated, veiled woman. The background is painted black. The female figures were painted entirely over a white ground. The servants have white skin, and their hair and features are drawn in red. They wear wreaths with large white leaves, white chitons, and striped himatia. Framing the scene on either side is a large ovoid form, which is flanked by a tendril that curls toward the figures.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Elie Borowski, Angensteinerstrasse 7, Basel, Switzerland; purchased by MFA from Elie Borowski, May 13, 1970

    Credit Line

    Arthur Tracy Cabot Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 150.

    Dimensions

    Height: 76 cm (29 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.478

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Centuripe ware (Sicilian)

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Oil flask (aryballos)

    Greek, East Greek
    Archaic Period
    about 550 B.C.

    Description

    Head of Herakles wearing his lionskin. Buff clay partly encrusted; traces of red paint. Fine modeling of all the features.

    Provenance

    By 1970: with Mathias Komor, 19 East 71st Street, New York, N.Y. 10021 (said to come from Rhodes); purchased by MFA from Mathias Komor, March 11, 1970

    Credit Line

    Arthur Mason Knapp Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    8 cm (3 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.64

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic

    On View

    Evanthea and Leo Condakes Gallery (Gallery 113A)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Head of Demeter-Io

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    2nd century A.D.

    Description

    Io is diademed, and the two tiny horns protruding from her forehead are her distinguishing marks. She wears a tiara, behind which a veil is drawn over her head. On top is a broken surface, which must be the remains of a basket (kalathos), a typical emblem of Demeter. Irregularities in the outline of the break suggest that a crescent moon was placed in front of the kalathos.
    On the right side of the head are remains of a strut, which would have connected to a tall torch.
    The type of figure is typical of Roman Egypt.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: said to have been brought from Patras by the donor's father; by 1963: Evelyn Yates Inman Collection; gift of Mrs. Arthur Inman (Evelyn Yates Inman) to MFA, December 11, 1963

    Credit Line

    Gift of Evelyn Yates Inman in memory of Alonzo Colt Yates of Washington, D.C.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 106; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 109 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 6 cm (2 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    63.2683

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, island

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Reliefs from a sarcophagus

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    about A.D. 180–210

    Description

    The larger fragment includes the heads of two horses, a cloaked male torso and the hand of a figure at the right. The smaller section shows a male figure from the back, wearing a cloak and petasos.
    The legendary Calydonian Boar Hunt is probably the subject represented on these fragments. The frontal torso may be of the hero, Meleager, who was the son of the Calydonian king and the man who led the expedition to kill the boar.
    The mutilated central section was sawed out and discarded. The upper molding remains on the larger fragment; otherwise they are broken where not cut and have damages, as visible, to the sculptured surfaces. What is not damaged is very fresh, with a crusty yellow patina.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Diffraction and determined to be Dolomitic.
    Harvard Lab No. HI367b: Isotope ratios - delta13C +3.12 / delta18O -3.92, Attribution - Thasos-Cape Vathy, Justification - Dolomitic by XRD.

    Provenance

    By 1970: with Royal-Athena Galleries, 1066 Madison Avenue, New York 10028 (said to be from Rome); purchased by MFA from Royal-Athena Galleries, April 8, 1970

    Credit Line

    Charles Amos Cummings Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 241; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 112 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height x width: 40 x 24 cm (15 3/4 x 9 7/16 in.) (hero) Height x width: 41 x 46 cm (16 1/8 x 18 1/8 in) (horses)

    Accession Number

    1970.267a-b

    Medium or Technique

    Marble, Dolomitic from the Greek island of Thasos

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Dionysos

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    A.D. 50–200

    Description

    Dionysos (god of wine) wears a chlamys over his shoulders and left arm, a wreath, and traveling boots. He was part of a group, probably with the satyr Ampelos. Left hand and left foot missing. Hand of Ampelos remains under Dionysos’ upraised right arm. Brown and red patina.

    Provenance

    Probably from Alexandria or Rome; by date unknown: with Mathias Komor, 19 East 71st Street, New York, N.Y. 10021; by date unknown: purchased from Mathias Komor by Professor Benjamin Rowland, Jr.; gift of Professor and Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr. to MFA, November 19, 1969

    Credit Line

    Gift of Professor and Mrs. Benjamin Rowland, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 100A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 120 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 15.7 cm (6 3/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    69.1257

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Mirror

    Italic, Etruscan
    Late Classical or Early Hellenistic Period
    4th century B.C.

    Mint: Etruria, Italy

    Description

    Back decorated with engraved figures of the Dioscuri. The twin sons of Zeus are represented as winged youths, armed with shields and spears, who wear only helmets and boots. Very well preserved, with tang for insertion into a handle. Dark patina covers most of the surface with some areas of lighter green.

    Provenance

    By 1973: with Mathias Komor, 19 East 71st Street, New York 10021 (said to come from the Matthews Collection); purchased by MFA from Mathias Komor, April 11, 1973

    Credit Line

    Alice M. Bartlett Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 093.

    Dimensions

    Length (max.): 25.5 cm (10 1/16 in.); diameter of disk 17.5 cm (6 7/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1973.191

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Tools and equipment, Cosmetic and medical

    More Info
  • Silenus

    Greek
    Late Classical Period
    mid-4th century B.C.

    Description

    Bald head, beard, and broad face characterize figure as Silenus, although he still has a youthful figure. Right arm raised (hand broken at fingers); back of left hand on hip.

    Provenance

    Date unknown: according to Warren's records: from Epidauros; 1888: exhibited in Rome at the Accademia dei Lincei; by 1889: Michel Tyszkiewicz Collection, Paris; by 1898: with Edward Perry Warren; 1898: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 69,618.13 (this figure is the total price for MFA 98.641-98.940)

    Credit Line

    Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 052; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 119 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    11.3 cm (4 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    98.669

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Oceanus (perhaps an attachment for a wagon)

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    Early 3rd century A.D.

    Description

    Lobster claws spring from the forehead of the personification of the ocean, who holds a jar of flowing water and strokes a sea monster.

    Provenance

    By 1986: with Robert Haber, 16 West 23rd Street, New York 10010 (said to have come from Spain and from a private Swiss collection); purchased by MFA from Robert Haber, September 17, 1986

    Credit Line

    Edwin E. Jack Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 071.

    Dimensions

    Height x width x length: 8 x 6 x 8 cm (3 1/8 x 2 3/8 x 3 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1986.340

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Young god or mythological being

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    2nd century A.D.

    Description

    The slim youth leans to his left in relaxed/languorous pose with his right hip cocked to the side while his torso bends to the left. The pose creates a sinuous contour. The left shoulder is raised above his right shoulder and his straight right leg is behind the flexed, advanced left leg. His soft physique is pronounced on his fleshy stomach and thighs. The elongation of the left side of the neck suggests that the figure looked downwards to the right.

    Condition: The torso, upper arms, lower part of the neck, parts of the genitalia, and legs at the knees are preserved. Clean breaks along the arms, neck and legs. Hole on the upper left thigh and rectangular break below this hole. Incrustations on surface. Yellow patina.

    Provenance

    By 1973: Benjamin Rowland, Jr. Estate; bequest of Benjamin Rowland, Jr. to MFA, February 13, 1974

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Benjamin Rowland, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 161; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 74 cm (29 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1974.125

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from the Greek mainland (probably Pentelic)

    On View

    Greek & Roman Sculpture Gallery (Gallery 211)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Statuette of Zeus

    Greek, Northern Greek or Modern
    Classical Period or Modern
    4th century B.C. or modern

    Description

    Standing Zeus with thunderbolt in upraised right hand, eagle on extended left palm. Rectangular platform with rivet indicates he was the finial of a column or pin. Probably from a temple treasury of northern Greece.
    The authenticity has been disputed and defended. It continues to be published as ancient by outside scholars.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Jeannette Brun, Dufourstrasse 119, Zurich 8008, Switzerland; purchased by MFA from Miss Jeannette Brun, November 19, 1969

    Credit Line

    Helen and Alice Colburn Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Height: 4.6 cm

    Accession Number

    69.1222

    Medium or Technique

    Gold

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Mirror and handle with Achilles and Troilus

    Greek
    Late Classical Period
    about 325 B.C.

    Description

    Tarentine mirror and handle with scene of Achilles and Troilos. The reverse of the disc has a series of concentric moldings culminating in a point at the center. The attachment at the upper back of the handle takes the form of a tall palmette with volutes. The openwork scene on the front of the handle, below the ovolo and tongue moldings and between the flaring acanthus, is set on wavy ground above the Ionic capital. Achilles, wearing helmet, cloak, and his shield over his shoulder, has dragged the panic-stricken young Troilos by the hair from his horse and is about to stab him with a short sword. The youth’s cloak trails on the ground beneath his body, and the horse is about to gallop away, reins flying free. Light green patina with heavy encrustation on the polished surface of the disc. Sections of the figured surface restored in wax.

    Provenance

    According to a letter from H. A. Cahn: found at the coast of Taranto; by 1967: with Münzen und Medaillen A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel (Münzen und Medaillen A.G., auction 34, May 6, 1967, lot 17); by 1970: probably with Royal Athena Galleries, 1066 Madison Avenue, New York; 1970: Paul E. Manheim Collection; gift of Paul E. Manheim to MFA, March 11, 1970

    Credit Line

    Gift of Paul E. Manheim

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 357A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 123 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 27.9 cm (11 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.239

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    On View

    Krupp Gallery (Gallery 215A)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Tools and equipment, Cosmetic and medical

    More Info
  • Pantheistic Tyche

    Greco-Roman
    Greco-Roman Period

    Description

    Tyche stands with right foot drawn back, poised on the rough base. A mural crown is surmounted by the headdress of Isis (feathers, disc, and horns). On her back are the wings of Nike and the quiver of Artemis. Her lowered right hand held a rudder, of which the handle and paddle remain. Her left holds the double cornucopiae with a uraeus rising between the fruits. The base is filled with lead, as if the figure had been carried on a pole or placed in a stand. Right wing and central section of rudder are missing. gray-brown patina, with earth encrustation.

    Provenance

    By 1967: with George Zacos, Engelgasse 65, Basel, Switzerland (said to be from Asia Minor); gift of George Zacos to MFA, December 13, 1967

    Credit Line

    Gift of George Zacos

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 118A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 120 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 11.4 cm (4 1/2 in.)

    Accession Number

    67.1036

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Water jar (hydria-kalpis)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 345–335 B.C.
    Painter the Whiteface-Frignano Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Campania

    Description

    Kadmos and the serpent. In the upper register is a gabled structure, possibly a heroon or a temple, its doors ajar to reveal the foreshortened roof timbers. In the pediment is a female face flanked by tendrils, perhaps an unusually tame gorgoneion. Yellow and black dots represent the nailheads and bosses on the doors. Two white-skinned females are seated on either side of the structure: the one on the left wears a chiton and a red himation and holds a yellow phiale in her left hand; the right one is nude to the waist, where her himation has fallen. Both women wear earrings, necklaces, and bracelets, and the one at the right has a bandoleer of charms. Both wear beaded stephanes of white, and the left one also wears a kekryphalos. The woman at the right looks down at the scene below where Kadmos and a companion battle the coiled serpent, whose white body is tinted with brown dilute glaze. Kadmos is at the left, holding a white spear and a white pointed amphora, both in his left hand. He moves to the left but looks back to the right, his face drawn in three-quarter view. He is naked save for an apicate fillet, a white sword and baldric, and the cloak over his left arm. He leans back with his right hand raised to throw a white stone at the snake, while his companion attacks it with a spear from the right. The companion is nude save for a white pilos and scabbard and the cloak over his left arm. Quadrated philai float in the field to his right and to the left of Kadmos.

    Wave-pattern circles the outer rim, and a laurel wreath circles the lower neck below a band of dotted egg-pattern. The groundline circling the lower body consists of stopt maeanders to the right, with two checkerboards at left and right. The reverse is covered with large palmettes and scrolling tendrils, which extend to the areas below the handles. White dots and bars are used to highlight many points within the florals.

    The amphora held by Kadmos was to be filled at the spring guarded by the serpent, the offspring of Ares. Though not visible, the spring is what gives life to the white flowers behind the serpent; their twisting stems are rendered by incising directly into the black glaze. In most such cases, Kadmos carries a hydria instead of an amphora, but the latter appears in two Paestan versions: a calyx-krater by Python (Louvre N 3157: Trendall, RVP, p. 143, no. 2/241, pl. 90), and a bell-krater by Asteas (Naples 82258: RVP, p. 85, no. 2/132, pl. 52). In Asteas’s version, the woman is seated above is identified as Thebe, the personification of the city Kadmos will found. Athena is present to guide the stone flung by Kadmos, and watching from above are the heads of the river god Ismenos and the fountain nymph Krenaia. In her comprehensive publication of the Boston vase, Emily Vermeule (in Festschrift Hanfmann, pp. 177-188) speculates that the two women might be Thebe and Dirke. M. A. Tiverios (LIMC, V, 1, p. 869) suggests Harmonia as another possibility. In the absence of inscriptions, attributes, or closer parallels, it is not possible to assign definite identities to these women, but some combination of the names that have been proposed is likely.

    In addition to Vermeule’s discussion of the myth of Kadmos and its treatment in art and literature, see Trendall, PP, pp. 23-25; idem, RVP, pp. 95-96; F. Vian, Les Origines de Thebes: Cadmos et les Spartes (Paris 1963); and Tiverios, LIMC, V, 1, pp. 863-882.

    The vase was originally attributed to the White-face Painter alone. Trendall has now recognized that this artist and the Frignano Painter are the same (Trendall, LCS, Suppl. III, p. 182). This vase is the artist’s most ambitious work, for he normally eschewed mythology for a monotonous series of languid youths, women, and Erotes. Compare the snake and Hesperides on his hydria in the Ros collection, Zurich (Trendall, LCS, p. 381, no. 3/139, pl. 147, 1; idem, Handbook, fig. 295).

    (text from Vase-Painting in Italy, catalogue entry no. 85)

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Hesperia Art, 2219 St. James Place, Philadelphia, PA. 19103; purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., October 15, 1969

    Credit Line

    Helen and Alice Colburn Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 085.

    Dimensions

    Height: 49 cm (12 13/16 in.); diameter: 35 cm (10 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    69.1142

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Zeus of Caesarea in Cappadocia

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    2nd century A.D.

    Place of Manufacture: (perhaps) Asia Minor

    Description

    Statuette of seated Zeus. The god wears a himation, which covers his back and left shoulder and falls loosely around his hips, legs, and sandals. Left hand is raised with fingers bent to hold some missing object, (probably a scepter ), and right hand outstretched to offer a tetrahedral attribute, which has spheres at its four apices. The pyramid may represent Mt. Argaios, sacred to Caesarea in Cappodocia.

    Provenance

    By 1972: with Mohammad Yeganeh, Gallery of Greek and Roman and Byzantine Art, Telemannstrasse 5, 6000 Frankfurt-Main, Germany; purchased by MFA from Mohammad Yeganeh, October 11, 1972

    Credit Line

    Edwin E. Jack Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 073.

    Dimensions

    Height: 20.5 cm (8 1/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1972.920

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Situla with an Amazonomachy scene

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 340–330 B.C.
    The Group of Copenhagen 2443

    Place of Manufacture: Apulia, Italy

    Description

    Situla (type 2)
    A: Amazonomachy. A mounted Amazon is attacking a Greek foot soldier, who advances from the right. The Amazon wears a short chiton, red trousers, a red, long-sleeved tunic, a belt with black and white dots, a red Phrygian camp, crossed bandoleers, and, over the left arm, a short cloak that blows out behind her. With her left hand she holds the reins of her rearing steed and with the right hand levels a long spear. The white body of the horse is tinted yellow in places. The Greek is nude save for embades, a Corinthian helmet of Italic type (worn on top of the head), and a chlamys that blows out behind him. He carries a shield and two short spears in his left hand, a longer spear in his right. The handle of the sword hanging at his hip is yellow, the hilt white. The yellow scabbard has a white tip. The helmet and damaged shield are shaded from dark yellow at the edges to white at their central convexity; the black curls on the shield are not from the warrior and would have been covered by the added white. A small plant in added yellow, white, and brown grows between his feet. Collapsed on the ground between the two combatants is a dying Amazon, dressed like her mounted compatriot but without a cap. Her axe and pelta have fallen beside her. She struggles to her knees, her face hidden, with red blood pouring from her head and side. Above, a small Nike flies toward the Greek to bestow a red and white wreath and red fillet. She wears white shoes and a kekryphalos, and a long chiton with red hem that distinguishes her from the far more numerous Erotes in Apulian vase-painting; compare the Eros crowning Dionysos on the previous vase, catalogue no. 39. The combatants may be Achilles and Penthesilea, since ordinary Greeks in combat with Amazons do not receive such honors.
    B: A woman in a chiton, kekryphalos, and white shoes stands to the right holding a yellow thyrsos with a pendant fillet in her right hand and a laurel branch in her left. She wears bracelets, a necklace, and earrings, all in yellow. At her feet is a large budding acanthus with a yellow center. Before her, an Eros wearing bracelets, earrings, anklets, necklace, kekryphalos, and shoes flies to the right to offer a fillet to a nude youth, who is seated to the left on an Ionic capital. The youth wears a thick yellow fillet with a row of triple dots along its top edge. He holds a phiale in his right hand and a thyrsos with pendant fillet in the left. A rosette and a phiale (?) float in the field. Small plants grow below the youth.
    The Painter of Copenhagen 4223 was a painter of ornate volute-kraters in the generation immediately before the Darius Painter. Compare a situla by the painter, formerly in the New York market, which may also represent Achilles and Penthesilea (RVAp, Suppl. I, p. 66, no.17/54b;
    D. von Bothmer, “Arts in Virginia” 23:3 [1983], p. 35, fig. 18). The Boston situla may be by the painter himself. For Apulian situlae, see comments on catalogue no. 37.

    (text from Vase-Painting In Italy, catalogue entry no. 40)

    Provenance

    By 1985: Galerie Günter Puhze, Stadtstrasse 28, D-7800 Freiburg, Germany (Kunst der Antike, Katalog 6, no. 226); by 1987: with Sotheby's, 34-35 New Bond Street, London (auction, July 13, 1987, lot 308); 1987: Dr. and Mrs. Jerome M. Eisenberg Collection (purchased at 1987 Sotheby auction, lot 308); gift of Dr. and Mrs. Jerome M. Eisenberg to MFA, March 27, 1991

    Credit Line

    Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Jerome M. Eisenberg

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 040.

    Dimensions

    Height: 30.5 cm (12 in.)

    Accession Number

    1991.242

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure, Apulian

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

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    Vessels

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  • Mixing bowl (bell-krater) depicting Orestes at the Delphic Omphalos

    Greek, South Italian
    Classical Period
    about 370–360 B.C.
    Close to the Judgement Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    A: Orestes at Delphi. As often in representations of this subject, he clasps the omphalos with one hand and brandishes a sword with the other; one leg is drawn back, and his chlamys swirls behind him to mark his violent agitation. Athena, vertical spear in her right hand, stands at the left, pointing at the young hero with her lowered left hand. She has come to assure Orestes that the Furies will be transformed into beneficient beings, Eumenides. Apollo stands at the right, two yellow arrows in his raised right hand and a laurel branch with white berries in the left. Two Furies sleep in the foreground. A yellow and brown phiale and a bucranium with pendant fillets are in the field above, below a band of dotted egg-pattern and a row of yellow dots that suggest architectural moldings. Athena wears a peplos, a black aegis with white gorgoneion, white scales and yellow snakes, a yellow Attic helmet with two yellow plumes on either side of the crest, white bracelets, and a belt with white spots. Orestes’ chalmys is pinned at the throat with a white brooch. His boots are emblades, with flaps of skin hanging from the tops. Apollo wears a yellow wreath, shoes, and a cloak over one shoulder. The Furies wear short chitons, belts, and crossed bandoleers with white dots. The Fury at the left holds a spear in her left hand and wears emblades, while the one at the right rests her right hand on a spear on the ground and wears different boots; she has yellow snakes entwined in her hair and around her left arm. Groundlines of red and white dots support Athena, Orestes, the omphalos, and the Fury at the left. Three white fillets are draped over the omphalos, which is circled by two wreaths. The scene is believed to relate to one described as the Delphi scene from the EUMENIDES by Aeschylus

    B: Dionysos is seated to the right, his cloak folded beneath him; he wears a yellow wreath and holds a stylized plant in his left hand. A maenad with a thyrsos in her left hand stands at the left; she wears a necklace, bracelets, and a radiate stephane, all in yellow, and a belted chiton. Her thyrsos has white dots on the cone and yellow and white chevrons on the staff. A nearly identical figure facing left stands at the right with a palm frond (?) in her left hand.

    A wreath of laurel circles the vase below the lip. Tongues partly surround the roots of the handles, below which are palmettes and scrolling tendrils. A band of linked maeanders to right interspersed with a few saltire-squares circles the lower body. Broken, repaired (in antiquity with pins), again and restored with pieces of Side B missing.

    Although not clearly attributable to the Judgement Painter, the leading artist of a large Plain-style workshop, the painting is close in style. For the subject, presumably inspired by the Eumenides of Aeschylus, see R. R. Dyer, JHS 89 (1969), pp, 38-56; Kossatz-Deismann, Dramen, pp. 102-117, pls. 19-24; and E. T. Vermeule (in Festschrift von Blanckenhagen, pp. 186-188, pl. 51, 1-2). Vermeule noted that the omphalos and altar are combined in one, compared the Athena and Apollo of sculptural types (Athena Medici and Apollo of Metapontum), and wondered if the “virginal and innocent Artemis-quality” (p. 187) of the sleeping Furies might be connected with the appearance of Artemis in several representations of the subject. Vermeule also noted that the subject was appropriate for funerary painting, “with its statement that the implacable powers of evil from the unseen world of the dead can indeed be transformed into beneficient powers of life and fertility, and that man can be forgiven” (p. 185).

    (text from Vase-Painting in Italy, catalogue entry no. 17)

    Provenance

    1962: purchased in Switzerland from Hubert Herzfelder by Robert E. Hecht, Jr. ; purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., June 9, 1976

    Credit Line

    Frederick Brown Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 017.

    Dimensions

    Height: 36 cm (14 3/16 in.); diameter: 39.3 cm (15 1/2 in.)

    Accession Number

    1976.144

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215C)

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • Mixing bowl (bell krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Classical Period
    about 400–385 B.C.
    the Tarporley Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    A: Athena holds up the head of Medusa, which is reflected in her shield (quite correctly, upside down). Her left hand rests on the vertical shaft of her long spear, the bronze butt of which is at bottom, the point out of sight at top. The goddess wears a belted chiton embroidered with palmettes, a necklace, earrings, and a sphendone. Her aegis is not in evidence. Perseus, in winged boots, chlamys, and elaborate Phrygian helmet, stands before her, leaning on a spear in his left hand; the helmet is presumably the one that magically confers invisibility. Hermes, a chlamys around his shoulders, leans on a barren tree at the right, his legs crossed, his right hand resting on his caduceus. Perseus will soon return the god’s winged boots. All three figures look down to avoid gazing at Medusa’a head, and Perseus takes the opportunity to study the reflection of his victim’s visage. The reflection presages Athena’s attachment of the head to the shield ( Apollodorus 2.4.3).

    B: A nude youth, with a strigil in the right hand and a staff in the left, stands between two companions wearing shoes and draped in himatia that cover their arms. The strigil suggests an assignation in the palaestra.

    A laurel wreath circles the vase under the rim. Rays partly surround the roots of the handles. The groundlines on either side consist of groups of linked maeanders to left alternating with saltire-squares.

    Like the Ariadne Painter, the Tarporley Painter was a close follower of the Sisyphus painter, active in the first quarter of the fourth century. He was an influential practitioner of the Plain style and had several followers and pupils including the Adolphseck, Hoppin, Truro, Lecce, and Dijon Painters, and the Painter of the Long Overfalls. The Tarporley Painter painted mostly bell-kraters, favoring Dionysiac and genre scenes over mythology.

    For Trendall’s most recent comments on the Tarporley Painter, see Festschrift Cambitoglou, pp. 211-215. The closest parallel to the main scene is the painter’s pelike in a Taranto private collection, with Perseus, Hermes, and the seated Athena reflecting the head of Medusa in her shield (RVAp, I, p.51, no. 3/44); compare also the version on the calyx-krater Gotha 72, on which Athena reflects the head in a pool, although the shield is still present (RVAp, I, p. 51 no. 3/39).

    (Text from Vase-Painting in Italy, catalogue entry no. 10)

    Provenance

    1969: published by A. Cambitoglou and A. D. Trendall, American Journal of Archaeology 73 (1969), p. 426, no. 3 bis, as: Swiss Market; by 1969: Robert E. Hecht, Jr. Collection; gift to MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., March 11, 1970

    Credit Line

    Gift of Robert E. Hecht, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 010.

    Dimensions

    Height: 30.5 cm (12 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.237

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

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  • The moon god Men

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    2nd–3rd century A.D.

    Description

    Clothing in eastern style: cloak, tunic, baggy trousers, shoes with turned-up toes. Horns of crescent moon on shoulders.

    Probably southwest Anatolia.

    Provenance

    By 1984: Mr. and Mrs. Abram T. Collier Collection; gift of Mr. and Mrs. Abram T. Collier to MFA, January 16, 1985

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Abram T. Collier

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 076.

    Dimensions

    Height: 6.2 cm (2 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1985.15

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Statuette of Athena in combat

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    1st–2nd century A.D.

    Description

    Bronze figure of Athena in combat. She wears a crested Corinthian helmet, a long chiton pinned on both shoulders and tied high up around the waist, and panther-skin boots. The garment has a sleeveless tunic falling to the lower middle of the body and long skirts that flow in folds and zigzags to the ankles. Her adversary was probably a giant.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Mrs. Jamileh Alavi Collection (in MFA, Sculpture in Stone and Bronze as: from a private collection in Germany, and possibly from Asia Minor or nearby lands); Gift of Mrs. Jamileh Alavi to MFA, June 25, 1986

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Jamileh Yeganeh Alavi

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 064.

    Dimensions

    Height: 11.6 cm (4 9/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1986.268

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Mixing bowl (column-krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Classical Period
    about 400–390 B.C.
    Painter Sisyphus Group; associated with the Ariadne Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Apulia, Italy

    Description

    A: Boar Hunt. The central hunter raises his sword in his right hand to slash the hindquarters of the boar, which charges to the left. His hunting companions stand on either side with spears, and there is a dead dog lying below. The hunter at the left braces his spear under his arm to take the charge of the boar. A tree and striped rocks denote the countryside. The hunter at the left wears a Greek chlamys, pinned at the throat, but the other two are in native Italian garb: the middle one with an embroidered loincloth secured by a broad belt, the one on the right in a striped tunic with two swastikas, also held by a belt. Both have cloaks on their left arm. Although the dead dog recalls the dog Ormenos in the depiction of the Calydonian Boar hunt on the François Krater (J. D. Beazley, Attic Black-figure Vase-painters [Oxford, 1956], p. 76, no. 1), there is nothing else to suggest that this is the legendary hunt, and indeed the native costume of the two hunters makes it unlikely.

    B: Two pairs of youths in long himatia stand in conversation. The leftmost youth holds a staff in his right hand; the second has a strigil in his raised right hand. Between the two at the right, whose arms are covered, hangs a pair of jumping weights; these act as a space-filler but also combine with the strigil to place the setting in the palaestra. The three youths at the right wear shoes.

    Two pairs of confronted boars and lions are drawn in black silhouette on the edge of the obverse rim; on the reverse edge is a degenerate ivy vine. Panels with ivy vines and berries decorate both necks, and a similar vine circles the top of the mouth. There are black palmettes on top of the handle-plates. The pictures have lateral frames of degenerate ivy and upper frames of tongues. The lower frames consist of triple linked maeanders to left alternating with saltire-squares.

    Trendall and Cambitoglou note nearly identical black animals on the rim of a column-krater in Milan (“H.A.” collection 345: RVAp, I, p. 26, no. 1/117), which also has four similar youths on the reverse and an Amazonomachy with a rocky landscape of this same type. In style, the Boston krater is closely linked with the Sisyphus Painter and the Gravina Painter but is listed by Trendall and Cambitoglou among works associated with another member of the Sisyphus Group, the Ariadne Painter.

    (text from Vase-Painting in italy, catalogue entry no. 9)

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Robert E. Hecht, Jr. Collection; gift to MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., March 11, 1970

    Credit Line

    Gift of Robert E. Hecht, Jr.

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 009.

    Dimensions

    Height: 53 cm (20 7/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.236

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

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    Vessels

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  • Mixing bowl (calyx-krater)

    Italic, Latin, Faliscan
    Classical Period
    about 380–360 B.C.
    The Nazzano Painter

    Description

    ITALIAN VASE PAINTING in ITALY, #166 (1970.487)
    Calyx-Krater
    Faliscan
    Attributed to the Nazzano Painter (Cahn)
    about 380-360 B.C.
    Side A: Telephos and the infant Orestes. Telephos, the wounded Mysian king, is seated on the altar in the palace at Mycenae with a dagger in his left hand and the infant Orestes in the other. The child is represented with white skin and wearing a wreath. He stretches out his arms imploringly toward his father, Agamemnon, and another man, perhaps Menelaos or Odysseus or the seer Kalchas. Agamemnon rushes toward the altar, his long scepter in his right hand, but is restrained by the second man. The king wears a sleeved tunic, a long chiton, and a himation that trails from his left arm. His garments are richly embroidered with stars, wave-pattern, palmettes, and egg-pattern. The same is true of the chitons of Telephos and “Kalchas,” both of whom also carry himatia and wear embades. At the right, the nurse, raising her arms in panic, has dropped a basket, possibly the baby’s cradle. At her right stands the mantled Clytemnestra, pouring a libation with a phiale in her lowered right hand. Like the nurse, she wears bracelets and a richly embroidered chiton and himation but has the latter pulled over her head. Both women have white skin, as do all the females in the scene except Athena.

    In the upper tier, the gods look down on those earthly events; from left to right are Athena, Iris, Apollo, Artemis, Zeus, and Hermes. At either end of the row of gods, above each handle, is a nude, white-skinned Eros. The one at the left places his left hand on Athena’s white, foreshortened shield, and with his right offers the goddess a phiale full of offerings, including two pomegranates. The other Eros stands with his body partly turned to the left, his wings spread out on either side behind him. In his left hand he holds a metal jug, and with his right he reaches toward the tympanum next to Hermes’ left leg. He wears nothing but shoes and a bracelet; his counterpart on the other side wears shoes, anklets, a bandoleer, and a wreath. Athena is seated with her legs to the right but looks back at the fruit offered by the Eros. Her right hand touches her shield, and the left holds her short spear in a vertical position. Her helmet has a long white crest, and her scaly aegis has a white-faced gorgoneion in the center. She wears bracelets, shoes, a necklace of white beads, and a richly embroidered peplos. To the right of Athena, Iris runs to the right toward the central group of Apollo and Artemis. Iris wears a short, embroidered chiton, embades, and bracelets. Her hair is tied in back with a white fillet, and there is a fillet of white beads round her head. She holds her caduceus in her outstretched left hand. Although Apollo is seated with his legs toward Iris, he does not see her approaching, having turned his head to the right to converse with Artemis. The god is seated on his cloak and holds a garlanded laurel branch in his left arm. He wears a wreath of laurel and two crossed bandoleers of white beads. Artemis stands facing Apollo, her bow in her upraised left hand and her right arm across her chest. She wears the same boots, chiton, bracelets, and fillets as Iris and also has a cloak over her left arm. Behind her, at the right, Zeus is seated with his legs to the right but looks back toward Artemis. His right hand is raised in front of his chest, and with his left arm he cradles his striped scepter. There is a wreath in his hair, and his cloak has fallen around his waist. To the right of Zeus, the nude Hermes stands with his right foot resting on an unseen support. He wears boots, a petasos, and a cloak pinned at the throat and holds his caduceus in his right hand. The garments of all the figures are richly embroidered, like those worn by actors.

    B: Dionysos and Ariadne stand between two capering satyrs. The god moves to the left atop a low, viny hummock while looking back at his white-skinned consort, who rests one foot upon a low altar. He is nude except for a wreath and the bordered cloak around his shoulders. Ariadne wears an embroidered chiton with a wave-pattern border as well as bracelets, earrings, a necklace, and a white fillet. Both carry thyrsoi in their left hands, and Dionysos also holds his kantharos in his right hand. A fillet trails from his thyrsos. The satyr at the left wears crossed bandoleers of white beads, and the one at the right holds a metal jug in his right hand. Both wear white wreaths. A variety of disks, rosettes, ivy leaves, and phialai float through the field as filling ornaments.

    Bands of dotted egg-pattern circle the rim and also frame the enclosed, upright palmettes in the handle-zone of the cul. A wreath of laurel and berries circles the vase below the overhanging rim.

    The Nazzano Painter is one of the most clearly defined artistic personalities in Faliscan vase-painting. His robust and somewhat rough, angular style is closely related to that of Athenian artists of the beginning of the fourth century like the Meleager Painter or the Oinomaos Painter. He frequently made use of their two-tiered compositions and ornate draperies, and the elaboration and richness of his work compare favorably with that of many of his Athenian predecessors and contemporaries. His mythological narratives often have an amusing quality because of their energy and vividly concrete detail. Some of his compositions, like this one, are relatively well ordered, while others, which may be later, are almost chaotic. Given that the only two Etruscan vase-painters known have Greek names - Praxias and Sokra(tes), both working in added red - it is possible that the Nazzano Painter too was a Greek, presumably an Athenian.

    Cahn (in Art of Ancient Italy, New York, April 4-29, 1970, pp. 32-33, no. 45), followed by Trendall and Webster (Illustrations, p. 104), connected the scene on this vase with the Telephos of Euripides. Keuls (in Festschrift Cambitoglou, pp. 87-94) has developed the Euripidean connections of this and other representations of the Telephos story even further; she points out that Clytemnestra is introduced into the story only by Euripides, who evidently felt the need for dramatic male-female interaction. Neither Clytemnestra nor other females participate in earlier representations of the story. Nonetheless, there is no need to assume a direct theatrical influence. Although Euripides was popular among South Italian Greeks, there is little evidence that he or his fellow playwrights were much performed in Etruria, let alone Falerii. The elaborate costumes are like those worn by actors, but this detail, like the basic conception of the subject and the composition, could have been transmitted from Attica via the channel of vase-painting. A good parallel for both subject and composition is provided by Berlin 3974, a roughly contemporary Attic calyx-krater (Bauchhenss-Thüriedl, Der Mythos von Telephos [Beiträge der Archäologie 3, 1971], pp. 26-28, pl. 2; De Puma, RM 87, 1980, pp. 17-18, pl. 5, 2; J. Boardman, Athenian Red Figure Vases: The Classical Period: A Handbook [London, 1989], fig. 357).

    As Richard De Puma has pointed out, the inhabitants of west-central Italy had a special reason to be interested in Telephos; he was regarded as the ancestor of the Etruscans, at least by the Greeks. The connection emerges in the obscure poem Alexandra, written by Lycophron in the third century B.C. Telephos was the father of Tarchon (of Tarquinia) and Tyrsenos (who provided the Greek name for the Etruscans, Tyrsenoi). The literary tradition can probably be traced back to the early third century. Lycophron’s verses in the Alexandra touching on this subject are thought to be derived from a long history by Timaeus of Tauromenium (Alexandra 1245-1259; in Callimachus…Lycophron…Aratus…[Loeb edition], p. 422; J. W. Salomonson, OudMed 38 [1957], pp. 29-30; R. D. De Puma, RM 87 [1980], p. 15). In Roman Imperial times, the tradition was modified slightly, and Telephos became the ancestor of the Latins. Telephos nursed by the hind was often paired with representations of Romulus and Remus and the wolf (Salomonson, OudMed 38 [1957], pp. 20-44; L. de Lachenal in A. Giuliano, ed., Museo Nazionale Romano: Le Sculture, I, 5 [Rome 1983], pp. 1-2, no. 1). This and the other Etruscan vases with Telephos collected by De Puma may provide the earliest evidence for this legend’s taking root in central Italy itself.

    Provenance

    1970: Münzen und Medaillen, Basel, and André Emmerich Gallery Inc., 41 East 57th Street, New York 10022 (Art of Ancient Italy, New York, April 4-29, 1970, no. 45); purchased by MFA from Andre Emmerich Gallery, Inc., November 10, 1970

    Credit Line

    John H. and Ernestine A. Payne Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 166.

    Dimensions

    Height: 49.1 cm (19 5/16 in.); diameter: 53.7 cm (21 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.487

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Pitcher (trefoil oinochoe)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 340 B.C.
    Artist Pilos Head Group

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Campania

    Description

    A centaur wearing a white wreath trots to the left, carrying a sapling with white leaves over his right shoulder and a boulder under his left arm. A hare and two birds hang from the tree. A band of wave-pattern circles the lower neck, and the shoulder is filled by a broad band of tongues. The lateral frames consist of tall, scrolling tendrils enclosed within narrow rectangles. The groundline is a band of dotted egg-pattern. There are large palmettes and floral ornaments on the back.

    In Attic vase-painting, the tree branch hung with small game was an attribute of the wise centaur Cheiron. The boulder, however, one would expect to see carried by one of the wild centaurs who broke up the wedding of Perithoos or who attacked Herakles at the well of Pholos. This, then is an all-purpose centaur, equipped by the artist with all of the traditional attributes but without a reference to a specific story or individual. Compare an oinochoe of shape 10, also from the Pilos Head Group, with a very similar centaur carrying a sapling with a dead hare: Vienna 828 (Trendall, LCS, p. 271, no. 6/291, pl. 109, 3). For Cheiron, see M. Gisler-Huwiler, LIMC, III, 1, pp. 237-248; III, 2, pls. 185-197.

    (text from Vase-Painting in Italy, catalogue entry no. 82)

    ITALIAN VASE PAINTING in ITALY, #82 (1970.363)
    Oinochoe (shape 2)
    Attributed to the Pilos Head Group
    about 340 B.C.

    A centaur wearing a white wreath trots to the left, carrying a sapling with white leaves over his right shoulder and a boulder under his left arm. A hare and two birds hang from the tree. A band of wave-pattern circles the lower neck, and the shoulder is filled by a broad band of tongues. The lateral frames consisit of tall, scrolling tendrils enclosed within narrow rectangles. The groundline is a band of dotted egg-pattern. There are large palmettes and floral ornaments on the back.
    In Attic vase-painting, the tree branch hung with small game was an attribute of the wise centaur Cheiron. The boulder, however, one would expect to see carried by one of the wild centaurs who broke up the wedding of Perithoos or who attacked Herakles at the well of Pholos. This, then, is an all-purpose centaur, equipped by the artist with all of the traditional attributes but without reference to a specific story or individual. Compare an oinochoe of shape 10, also from the Pilos Head Group, with a very similar centaur carrying a sapling with a dead hare: Vienna 828 (Trendall, LCS, p. 171, no. 6/291, pl. 109, 3). For Cheiron, see M. Gisler-Hawiler, LIMC, III, 1, pp. 237-248; III, 2, pls. 185-197.

    Provenance

    1970: published by A. D. Trendall, The Red-Figured Vases of Lucania, Campania and Sicily, First Supplement (1970), p. 47, no. 291a, as Boston 1970.363 (ex Zurich market); by date unknown: with Royal-Athena Galleries, 1066 Madison Avenue, New York; April or early May, 1970: purchased from Royal-Athena Galleries by the Boston Teachers Club; Gift of Boston Teachers Club to MFA, May 13, 1970

    Credit Line

    Gift of the Boston Teachers Club in memory of Mary Ward (September 14, 1884 - May 6, 1949)

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 082.

    Dimensions

    Height: 24.5 cm (9 5/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1970.363

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Statuette of Men, the moon god

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    1st–2nd century A.D.

    Description

    The Asiatic moon-god Men stands with right arm upraised (to hold a lance?), left hand on hip. Phrygian headdress to shoulders; long cloak; belted tunic, tight trousers, boots; crescent moon on head in form of cap. Deep green to black patina; small hole in bottom of right foot.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: presumably from Asia Minor; by 1984: with Selim Dere, West Side Jewelry, 7 Godwin Avenue, Ridgewood, N.J. 07450; purchased by MFA from Selim Dere, June 13, 1984

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. E. Ross Anderson and the Classical Department Publication Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 075.

    Dimensions

    Height: 10 cm (3 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1984.234

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Mixing bowl (bell-krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Classical Period
    about 370–360 B.C.
    Painter The Bendis Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Apulia, Italy

    Description

    A: Bendis stands to the right with a spear held vertically in her right hand. She wears yellow earrings, yellow necklace, embades, a chiton, a yellow belt, a Phyrigian cap, embroidered trousers, and a sleeved tunic - appropritae garb for a goddess from barbarian Thrace. Bendis offers a drink from a yellow phiale in her left hand to a hare held by Apollo, who is seated to the left on a folded cloak. Apollo wears a white wreath, and his quiver, decorated with a wave-pattern, hangs at his left side on a baldric. In his left hand he holds a tree that does not really resemble laurel. Hermes stands at the right, wearing a petasos and chlamys, his caduceus in his lowered right hand. The chlamys is pinned at his throat by a yellow brooch. In the field above the hare is a yellow star.

    B: Three youths stand clad in himatia. The one at the left holds a strigil in his extended right hand. The middle youth crowns the one on the right with a fillet. The latter holds a staff vertically in his extended right hand.

    A laurel wreath circles the vase below the lip. The baseline consists of triple linked maeanders to left alternationg with saltire-squares. There are palmettes and scrolling tendrils under the handles, the roots of which are partly surrounded by tongues.

    The Bendis Painter was a close associate of the Adolphseck Painter and the Painter of the Long Overfalls. Like them, he was a follower of the Tarporley Painter and worked in the Plain style. This is not his only name-vase, as several other works also represent Artemis-Bendis in oriental costume. The significance of the hare in this example is not clear. For Bendis in South Italian vase-painting, see K. Schauenburg, Jdl 89 (1974), pp. 137-86; see also Z. Goceva and D. Popov, LIMC, III, 1, pp. 95-97; III, 2, pls. 73-74.

    (text from Vase-Painting in Italy, catalogue entry no. 16)

    Provenance

    By 1936: A. Ruesch Collection, Zurich (Auction Fischer, Lucerne, 1936, lot 30); by 1958: with Münzen und Medaillen A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel (auction 18, November 29, 1958, lot 147); February 1959: purchased by Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III from Münzen und Medaillen A.G.; loaned to MFA by Mr. and Mrs. Vermeule, August 1, 1964 (loan no. 106.64); Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III to MFA, December 7, 1983

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius C. Vermeule III in the Name of Cornelius Adrian Comstock Vermeule

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 016.

    Dimensions

    Height: 43 cm (16 15/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1983.553

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Mixing bowl (calyx-krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 345–335 B.C.
    Close to Hippolyte Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Apulia, Italy

    Description

    Close to the Darius Painter (Trendall); Close to the Hippolyte Painter (Padgett and Herrmann)
    A. At the center, Dionysos is seated on his cloak and leaning against some striped cushions. He wears a bracelet and holds a phiale in his right hand. In his left hand he holds a thyrsos with a yellow shaft and a tip in added red and brown. He is crowned by a flying Eros, who holds a smaller phiale. Eros wears a kekryphalos and yellow bracelets and anklets. A dappled fawn, its pelt tinted with brown dilute glaze, reclines next to Dionysos and looks back toward the god. A maenad, wearing a diaphanous dotted chiton, bracelets, and earrings, and a necklace with white pendants, dances at the right. She carries a thyrsos in her left hand and a torch with a trailing fillet in her right. A feline skin, which is colored with added red on one side and added yellow on the other, dangles from her left arm. At the left a young Pan is laying a calyx-krater decorated with figures in added yellow at the god’s feet. The animal skin pinned at the satyr’s throat flies in the wind behind him. A phiale and a white lyre with yellow details lie in the foreground on either side of a small grotto with a rocky border. Ivy hangs from the upper frame, and a rosette floats in the field at the upper left. The terrain throughout is indicated by short goundlines of yellow dots.
    B: A young satyr, standing to the right with his left foot on a yellow rock, holds out in his right hand a white kantharos with yellow shading and in his left a wreath and yellow fillet. He offers them to a female seated on a rock, who holds a large phiale in her right hand; in her lowered left hand is a long laurel branch with a pendant fillet. She wears a chiton, shoes, earrings, bracelets, a kekryphalos, and a necklace with white pendants. The satyr wears a yellow fillet and shoes. Two fillets and a “window” fill the field at the top, and a laurel bush grows at the left, behind the satyr. A row of yellow dots represents the groundline.
    A wreath of laurel circles the vase below the lip. The lower frame on side A consists of rosettes with yellow centers over a band of egg-pattern; on side B, there are linked maeanders to left, with a dotted cross-square in the center.
    The Hippolyte Painter was a forerunner of the Darius Painter. Very few vases have been attributed to him or to his associate the Laodamia Painter. Compare the decorated krater, the diaphanous chiton of Ariadne, the scattered implements, thick white fillets, and subsidiary ornament of the painter’s calyx-krater in Basel (BS 468: “RVAp”, II, p. 480, no. 18/13, pl. 170, 3-4).

    (text from Vase-Painting In Italy, catalogue entry no. 39)

    Provenance

    By date unknown: William Randolph Hearst Collection (said to have been in H.I.H. Prince Albrecht of Prussia Collection at unknown date); 1963: with Parke-Bernet Galleries, 980 Madison Avenue, New York, N.Y. 21 (Parke-Bernet Galleries auction of William Randolph Hearst Collection, April 5, 1963, lot 99); purchased by Edythe K. Shulman at Parke-Bernet auction of Hearst Collection; loaned to MFA by Edythe K. Shulman, January 11, 1979; returned to Mrs. Shulman, September 20, 1983; gift of Edythe K. Shulman to MFA, December 18, 1985

    Credit Line

    Gift of Edythe K. Shulman

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 039.

    Dimensions

    Height: 41 cm (16 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1985.897

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Young Herakles

    Roman
    Imperial Period
    2nd century A.D.

    Description

    Statuette of the young Herakles, wearing lion-skin and holding his club as a support in his left hand. Statue is based on famous cult-image in imperial Rome (see coins of Trajan, A.D. 98-117). See basalt replica in Museo Capitolino (Stuart Jones, Catalogue, pp. 275f., no. 3, pl. 64). Dark greenish-black patina.

    Provenance

    By 1972: with Mohammad Yeganeh, Telemannstrasse 5, 6 Frankfurt am Main, Germany; purchased by MFA from Mohammad Yeganeh, April 12, 1972

    Credit Line

    Edwin E. Jack Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 084.

    Dimensions

    Height: 9.4 cm (3 11/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1972.358

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Lentoid seal with a bull-man

    Early Aegean, Minoan
    Bronze Age, Late Minoan II-IIIA Period
    about 1470–1315 B.C.

    Description

    Burnt carnelian. Lentoid seal; pierced horizontally. Bull-man somersaulting to right. The creature presents the legs of a man with a double-belted waist and recurving torso and head of a bull in profile. The shoulder blade is clearly delineated. The forelegs are indicated with two parallel lines ending with conical, drilled hooves. Three drilled holes represent the eye, muzzle and cheek. Small chip missing on the right side and large chip in the back.

    Provenance

    By 1928: Mrs. Beulah H. Emmet Collection (one of a group of gems [MFA 1971.159-.176] acquired on Crete from Mr. Kephalogiannis in 1928, according to M. H. Wiencke, AJA 73 [1969], p. 33); gift of Mrs. Beulah H. Emmet to MFA, April 14, 1971

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Beulah H. Emmet

    Details

    Dimensions

    Diameter: 1.6 cm (5/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1971.173

    Medium or Technique

    Burnt carnelian

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Seals

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  • Head of Zeus-Ammon

    Roman
    Imperial Period, Hadrianic to Antonine
    about A.D. 120–150 (after a Greek prototype)

    Description

    This head is a full-sized copy of a work created in the style of the Greek Sculptor Pheidias in the fifth century B.C. The turn of the head has been imparted by the copyist, who otherwise has merely toned down the Athenian High Classical gravity of the prototype.
    Much of the horns and all of the ram’s ears are missing. The back of the head appears to have been made separately and cemented on. Nose and locks are worn, chipped, and weathered. Cement, from reuse as building material, is evident here and there.

    Scientific Analysis:
    Harvard Lab No. HI761: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.81 / delta18O -6.37, Attribution - Pentelikon, Justification - Fine grained marble.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: Sir Robert Mond Collection; by date unknown: Lord Nathan Collection, Churt House, Rotherfield, Crowborough, Sussex (Christie's auction of Lord Nathan Collection, July 14, 1959, lot 125); purchased at Christie's auction of Lord Nathan Collection by Cornelius C. Vermeule III on behalf of MFA; purchased by MFA from Cornelius C. Vermeule III, November 12, 1959, for $ 250.00

    Credit Line

    Gift of Edward Perry Warren, by exchange

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 140; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 111 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 31 cm (12 3/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    59.715

    Medium or Technique

    Marble from Mt. Pentelikon near Athens

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

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  • Zeus Dolichenus

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    2nd–3rd century A.D.

    Description

    The god is dressed in a Roman military costume with a Phrygian cap on his head. In his left hand he clutches the lightning bolts of the thunder god; and in the right, which is now mostly missing, he probably held a double ax. His cult was Syrian in origin and travelled back to Rome with Eastern travellers.

    Provenance

    By 1973: Mr. and Mrs. Richard R. Wagner Collection (presumably from Asia Minor); gift of Mr. and Mrs. Richard R. Wagner to MFA, March 14, 1973

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Richard R. Wagner

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 074.

    Dimensions

    Height: 7 cm (2 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    1973.163

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Coin of Mytilene in alliance with Pergamon and Ephesos with bust of Zeus Boulaios

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    A.D. 253–268

    Mint: Asia Minor: Lesbos (with Mysia and Ionia), Mytilene (with Pergamon and Ephesos in alliance)

    Description

    Obverse: Bust of Zeus Boulaios, laureate, left, chlamys on left shoulder.
    Inscription in Greek.
    Reverse: Asklepios stands at left looking toward Tyche of Mytilene seated in center holding rudder and Dionysiac term. At right, Artemis standing
    Inscriptions in Greek in field, in exergue and around.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with A. H. Baldwin & Sons, Ltd., The Adelphi, 1-11 John Adam Street, London W.C. 2, England; April 14, 1971: purchased by MFA from A. H. Baldwin & Sons, Ltd.

    Credit Line

    Theodora Wilbour Fund in memory of Zoë Wilbour

    Details

    Dimensions

    Diameter: 42.5 mm. Weight: 39.65 gm. Die Axis: 6

    Accession Number

    1971.136

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    On View

    Michael C. Ruettgers Gallery of Ancient Coins (Gallery 212C)

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Numismatics, Coins

    More Info
  • Mirror and Handle with the Birth of Helen

    Italic, Etruscan
    Classical Period
    400–350 B.C.

    Description

    Design in relief showing the seated King of Lacedaemon, Tyndareos, contemplating an egg which is held by Hermes standing in the center. At the right Leda is seated in the rockwork landscape. Fish swim beneath their feet. Inscriptions in Etruscan identify the three figures as “Tuntle” (Tyndareos), “Turms” (Hermes) and “Latva” (Leda). The scene is framed by interlocking acanthus tendrils with a palmette at the base; on this basis as well as the inscriptions contained in relief boxes, some scholars have attributed the mirror to a Vulcian workshop. There is another palmette on the reverse, also at the base. The outside edge is enriched with an ovolo molding in relief.

    There is a small piece broken off the upper rim, and one tip of the handle is missing. Brown and green patina, with some areas of corrosion.

    Provenance

    By 1969: Robert E. Hecht, Jr.; April 14, 1971: purchased from Robert E. Hecht, Jr. by the MFA (said at the time of acquisition to have been known to the Classical department for about ten years, and was later recalled to have come from Hesperia Art, Philadelphia).

    Credit Line

    William E. Nickerson Fund, No. 2

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 376A; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 123 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Length: 29 cm (11 7/16 in.); diameter 18.8 cm (7 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1971.138

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Cosmetic and medical

    More Info
  • Silver Agathodaimon (the Good Spirit)

    Roman Provincial
    Imperial Period
    1st or 2nd century A.D.

    Description

    Agathodaimon carries a cornucopiae and pours a libation from a bowl. He was a protective spirit and a god of fertility and prosperity.

    Provenance

    By 1971: with Münzen und Medaillen A.G., Malzgasse 25, Basel, Switzerland (said to be from Asia Minor); purchased by MFA from Münzen und Medaillen A.G., April 14, 1971

    Credit Line

    John Michael Rodocanachi Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    3.4 cm (1 5/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1971.142

    Medium or Technique

    Silver

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Mixing bowl (calyx-krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 340–330 B.C.
    the Darius Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    Side A: Alkmene on the pyre, with rainbow. She is seated on the altar her husband Amphitryon tried to make her pyre. The altar is rectangular with a Doric frieze. Amphitryon and two boys bring wood. Kreon watches at right. An eagle flies to the right above the altar. To the right of the eagle, Hermes is seated with his caduceus in his raised right hand and his petasos in his left. Facing him is Aphrodite. At the upper left is the blind seer Teiresias, apparently the foreteller of Herakles’ greatness. A youthful attendant is standing in front of him; he gestures toward Teiresias and with his other hand points toward Amphitryon’s attempted sacrilege.

    Side B: The nude Dionysos seated on a cloak between two maenads and a young satyr. Dionysos holds a phiale full of offereings in his right hand, which he raises toward the maenad at the left, who holds a tambourine in her lowered left hand.

    It is likely that the action and personae are based ultimately on Euripides’ lost play, Alkmene, a further echo of which may be seen in the elaborate costume of Teiresias. Zeus had sired Herakles by coming to Alkmene in the guise of her husband, Amphitryon. Accused of adultery, Alkmene took refuge on the altar in their house. Zeus heard her supplications and sent Hermes to tell the clouds to bring the rain that put out the fire and formed the rainbow around Alkmene. Shortly thereafter, Alkmene gave birth to her children, Herakles and his half-brother Iphikles (the child of Amphitryon). Aphrodite and Eros represent the passion of Zeus, who in this version apparently comes in the guise of an eagle to rescue his love.

    (from Vase-Painting in Italy, no. 43)

    A: The rescue of Alekmene, mother of Herakles. Alkmene sits on the altar that her husband Amphitryon tried to make her pyre. The altar is a rectangular structure of white stone, with a Doric frieze and black spots on top, perhaps representing ashes. Alkemene is surrounded by a red, yellow, and white rainbow; she wears sandals, a white-dotted fillet, chiton, himation, and a third garment over her shoulders and clutched around her head like a veil or hood. Her bracelets, necklace, and earrings are in added white and yellow. Amphytrion, with lighted torch in his right hand and a long spear in his left, looks toward his wife. He wears a chlamys pinned at the throat and a white pilos and has a sword with a white hilt at his side hanging from a white baldric. Two young attendants bring wood to the altar; the one at the right has a cloak over one arm, the one at the left also carries a lighted torch. At the far right, King Kreon of Thebes looks on, his right hand raised in a questioning gesture, his left holding a white pilos and a spear. Kreon has a cloak around his shoulders and a white baldric across his chest. Zues is present in the form of a yellow-brown eagle, which flies to the right above the altar. Above the eagle, suspended from the upper border, are a pilos in added red and two yellow chariot wheels.

    Joining the eagle in the upper register are five figures. To the right of the eagle, Hermes is seated to the right with his caduceus in his raised right hand and his petasos in his left; both are white with yellow shading. He sits upon his chlamys and in otherwise nude, save for elaborate sandals with yellow wings. A quiver with a white strap lies at his feet on the dotted groundline. Facing him, at the upper right is Aphrodite, who sits to the left, holding a branch in her right hand. Eros leans against her right leg and holds a yellow hoop in his right hand; he wears white bracelets, anklets, earrings, and necklace, as well as shoes and a sakkos. Aphrodite wears chiton, himation, kekryphalos, and white shoes. Her bracelets, earrings, and necklace are white. In her left hand she holds the string of an iynx-wheel. At the upper left is the blind seer Teiresias, apparently present as the foreteller of Herakles’ greatness. He is seated to the left, wearing shoes, a himation, a red fillet, a belt with white circles, an embroidered chiton, and a tunic with long, red sleeves. he holds a long staff topped by a figured pinax, perhaps the Kaiberic shrine of Thebes, in his left hand. The shaft of the staff is decorated with white dots and tied with a beaded fillet. A youthful attendant, wearing himation and wreath, is standing in front of him; he gestures toward Teiresias and with his other hand points toward Amphitryon’s attempted sacrilege. On the ground around the altar are logs and a bovine skull in yellow: a previous sacrificial victim. A tree grows near Teiresias, apparently laurel, and a branch and beaded fillet or necklace fill the field before Aphitryon. Grounlines of white and yellow dots indicate the terrain throughout the picture. Alkemene, Amphitryon, Teiresias, and Kreon are identified by incised inscriptions.

    B: The nude Dionysos is seated on his cloak between two standing maenads, all three holding thyrsoi, the one in the god’s left hand also being grasped by the maenad at right, who holds another in her left hand. Both her thyrsos and that of the god have long fillets attached. This maenad looks to the right at a satyr advancing with a torch in his right hand and a situla in the lower left. The satyr wears a white fillet; a yellow fillet hangs above him. Dionysos holds a phiale full of offerings in his right hand, which he raises toward the maenad at the left, who holds a tambourine in her lowered left hand. Both maenads wear chitons, shoes, kekryphaloi, and white earrings, necklaces, and bracelets. Dionysos wears a yellow wreath. A rossette floats in the upper field, and a bunch of grapes, yellow and white, hangs from the upper border. Flowers grow from the lower border, one large one interrupting the dotted groundline.

    A laurel wreath with large berries circles the underside of the rim. Between the handles on side A is a band of rosettes over a narrow band of dotted egg-pattern. The ornament on side B is identical to that on the reverse of cat.no 41, with groups of stopt maeanders to the left alternating with cross-squares, with smaller squares in each quadrant. Below the maeander is a band of blank eggs.

    It is likely that the action and the personae are based ultimately on Euripides’ lost play, Alkmene, a further echo which may be seen in the elaborate costume of Teiresias. Zeus had sired Herakles by coming to Alkemene in the guise of her husband, Amphitryon. Accused of adultery, Alkemene took refuge on the altar in their house. Zeus heard supplications and sent Hermes to tell the clouds to bring the rain that put out the fire and formed the rainbow around Alkmene. Shortly thereafter, Alkmene gave birth to her children, Herakles and his half-brother Iphikles (the child of Amphitryon). In the play, Hermes probably spoke the prologue and Zeus the epilogue. Kreon is present because he and Amphitryon have just returned from their campaign against Teleboans. It is Kreon’s daughter Megara who will become Herakles’ first wife ( see Apollodorus The Library 2.4.6-11) Aphrodite and Eros represent the passion of Zues, who in this version apparently comes in the guise of an eagle to rescue his love.

    On Alkmene in ancient art, see A.D Trendall, in LIMC, I, 1, pp. 552-556; I, 2, pls. 413-416; and K. Schauenburg, AuA 10 (1961), pp. 87-88. For the necklace hanging from a branch, compare the Boston krater with the baby Aigisthos (cat. no. 41). For Kreon, see K. Birte Poulsen, LIMC, VI, 1, pp. 112-117; VI, 2, pls. 49-50. For a close parallel to the figure of Kreon on this vase, compare Menelaos on a krater in the Paul collection, Miama (Trendall, Handbook, fig. 205; RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 150, no. 18/65a, pl. 37,2) For the group of Aphrodite and Eros, compare the group from the east frieze of the Parthenon (F. Brommer, The Sculptures of the Pathenon: Metopes, Frieze, Pediments, Cult-Statue [London, 1979], pl. 105) For the nimbus around Alkmene, compare that surrounding Poseidon and Amphithea on a loutrophoros by the Darius painter in the Brailard collection, Geneva ( Aellen, Cambitoglou, and Chamay, Peintre de Darius, pp. 124-136; RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 149, no. 18/56a). The motif handed down by the Darius Painter to his successor, the Underworld Painter, who used it to envelope Eos and Kephalos on a lekythos in Richmond (inv. 81.55: M.E Mayo, in Mayo, Magna Graecia, pp. 133-136, no. 51; RVAp, Suppl. I, pp. 83 [no. 18/281b], 219) For the boy with the blind Teiresias, compare a chorus by the Darius Painter in Basel (inv. BS 473: RVAp, II, p. 503, no. 18/73a; Schefold and Jung, Argonauten, p. 66, fig. 46). Compare also a lost vase-painting that M. Schmidt identifies as Teiresias before Oedipus (M. Schmidt, in Festschrift Hausmann, p. 241, fig. 1)

    Provenance

    1986: published by A. D. Trendall in H. A. G. Brijder, et al., eds., Enthousiasmos (1986), p. 162, as: on the American market; 1987: published by A. D. Trendall, Red-figured Vases of Paestum (1987), p. 140, note 3, as: on the U.S. Market; by 1989: with NFA Antiquities, 10100 Santa Monica Boulevard, Los Angeles, California 90067; purchased by MFA from NFA Antiquities, April 26, 1989

    Credit Line

    Gift of Harry J. Denberg, Jerome M. Eisenberg, and Benjamin Rowland, Jr., by Exchange; Gift of Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman, and Classical Department Curator's Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 043.

    Dimensions

    Height: 56.8 cm (22 3/8 in.); diameter: 50.2 cm (19 3/4 in)

    Accession Number

    1989.100

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215C)

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Mixing bowl (calyx-krater)

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical Period
    about 340–330 B.C.
    Painter the Darius Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

    Description

    A: The exposure of the baby Aigisthos. The figures are arranged in two tiers; divine and semidivine figures above, mortals below. Thyestes (Greek) [inscription “THYESTES” above his head to the right], dressed in a long-sleeved tunic, a chiton cinched with a broad white belt, a chlamys pinned at the throat, and a pilos with two white dots, hands over his infant son, Aigisthos (Greek) [inscription “AIGISTHOS” above his head to the right], to a hunter to be exposed. His white staff has fallen by his legs. The baby has a red blanket, a bracelet, a string of white charms across his chest, and a fillet tying up his hair. He holds a yellow rectangular object with handle in his left hand. The huntsman wears a bordered chlamys pinned with a white brooch; his two spears stand at the left. Adrastos (Greek) [inscription “ADRASTOS” above his head to the right], king of Sikyon, stands at the center, gesturing at Thyestes, as though telling him not to hold back. He wears laced shoes and a himation and with his left hand holds a dotted scepter with a white eagle on top. His queen, Amphithea (Greek) [inscription “AMPHITHEA” above her head and to the left), comforts Pelopeia (Greek) [inscription “PELOPEIA to the right of her head], daughter of Thyestes and mother of Aigisthos, at the right. Both women wear chitons, bracelets, earrings, and necklaces. The queen has a radiate white diadem and white shoes, while Pelopeia wears a fillet, sandals, and a red belt. As is fitting, the queen’s garments are more richly embroidered. Behind Adrastos is an elaborate white (i.e., ivory) throne with a red cushion and a band of red ornament. At the right, between the king and Pelopeia, a necklace hangs from a laurel branch. At the far right, behind Amphithea, is a laurel branch.
    From left to right in the register above are five divinities and personifications important to the entire saga. Artemis stands with a bow and arrows in her right hand and an arrow in her left. She wears a short chiton with a broad belt, a tunic with long, spotted sleeves, a white necklace, and a fillet that ties her hair in a chignon. A quiver hangs on her back. Facing Artemis is a little Pan, holding a raised white club in his left hand and a white shell in his right; a bow and quiver hang from the club. He has hairy goat’s legs and tall white horns that contrast with the curve of the yellow bow. Apollo is seated to left, his head turned toward the Fury standing at the right. The god holds a large white swan perched on his right thigh and a laurel branch in his left hand. Above him is a yellow sun symbol and below him is a leopard or cheetah. Apollo is wearing a wreath, high boots, and a cloak that cushions his seat and lies across his thighs. The winged Fury leans on the spear in her right hand, her legs crossed, as she looks down on the act of attempted infanticide. She wears a peplos, a broad belt with white circle, a cloak hanging over both shoulders, a tunic with long, spotted sleeves, a necklace, white fillet, embades with yellow liners, a sword and scabbard and crossed bandoleers with white spots. Yellow snakes twine about her hair. Beyond her at the right, Sikyon (Greek) [inscription “SIKYON above his head], personified by a nude youth, sits on a pair of white Doric columns and holds a scepter with a floral finial in his left hand. In the field above Sikyon and Pan are white bucrania with yellow horns. To the right of Sikyon is a yellow sun symbol. The names of Sikyon and all the figures in the lower register are clearly incised. Some of the larger white objects (the throne, Thyestes’ belt, Pan’s club) have yellow shading over the added white.
    B: Five Dionysiac figures are standing or seated in two registers. Dionysos is seated at the lower center with a thyrsos in his left hand and a phiale on his outstretched right. He wears yellow shoes and a himation that has fallen about his waist. A thick, spotted, yellow fillet is braided in his hair. At the left is a maenad wearing a chiton, shoes, kekryphalos, earrings, bracelets, and necklace, and holding a thyrsos in her right hand and a wreath in her left. Her left foot rests upon a rock, before which grows a laurel bush. Next to this, by Dionysos’s legs, is a cylindrical cista with yellow-shaded stripes. At the right is a satyr with a blazing torch in his right hand and a thyrsos in his left. He wears a yellow fillet, and a fawn skin dangles from his left arm. A yellow fillet flutters from his torch. Seated above, at left, is a satyr with a yellow fillet and holding a tympanum in his right hand. He looks across at the maenad at the upper right, who holds a laurel branch in her right hand and a basket of offerings (including a tall cake) in her left. She wears a chiton, necklace, earrings, bracelets, a fillet of white beads, and shoes. Hanging fillets frame the sides of both registers and fill the center of the upper field. A white alabastron with yellow shading lies near the upper satyr. Dotted groundlines define the terrain throughout.
    A wreath of laurel circles the vase below the lip. Above each handle is a large palmette. The lower frame on side A consists of alternating lotuses and palmettes above a band of dotted egg-pattern; the reverse consists of groups of maeanders to left alternating with cross-squares with small squares in each quadrant. Below the maeander band is a band of blank eggs.
    The iconography of the primary scene has been explored by Emily Vermeule (PCPS 1987, pp. 124-133, 136-137, 146-148, fig. 1). The inspiration was probably a play, specifically Sophocles’ lost “Thyestes in Sikyon”. No other representation of the subject is currently known. The gods are not mere onlookers here, for Artemis seems to be instructing Pan to find a goat to suckle the baby Aigisthos, who derives his name from his goatish nurse. The Fury, according to Vermeule, “is a pictorial comment on the future of the House of Atreus if Aigisthos should survive to kill Atreus and seduce his cousin Agamemnon’s wife.” Apollo is present because it was he who told Thyestes that only a child incestuously got from his daughter could be the instrument of his revenge on his brother Atreus. The youth representing Sikyon (where Adrastos would later found the Pythian Games in Apollo’s honor) sits on columns that remind Vermeule of Pausanias’s statement that tomb monuments in Sikyon take the form of pillars and pediments (Paus. 2.7.2), a possible funerary allusion on a vase that was perhaps made to be a grave offering. A more ominous allusion may be provided by the object held by the infant Aigisthos, which Vermeule interprets as “the hilt of the famous sword Pelopeia took from Thyestes on the night of their reunion. The baby should not have it yet, but the painter signs to us that this is Thyestes’ own sword, and that it will be the true instrument of inheritance and revenge, the sword he will wear when sent by Atreus to kill his true father, the sword by which Thyestes will recognize him as his son, the sword Pelopeia will seize….to thrust it in her breast, the sword Aigisthos will take, still bloody, to kill Atreus…as Atreus sacrificed his brothers” (p. 127). The horrific sequel is represented on catalogue no. 42, a Panathenaic amphora by the Darius Painter.
    For the childhood of Aigisthos and the death of Atreus, see Apollodoros Epitome 2. 13-24; and Hyginus Fabulae 87-88. See also L. Sechan, “Etudes sur la tragedie grecque dans ses rapports avec la ceramique” (Paris, 1926), pp. 199-213. For Aigisthos, see R. M. Gais, LIMC I, 1, pp. 371-179; for Adrastos, I. Krauskopf, LIMC I, 1, pp. 231-240; for Amphithea, C. Berger-Doer, LIMC, I, 1, p. 723.
    Several stylistic and iconographic elements link the vase to other works by the Darius Painter; compare the Artemis and the Apollo-with-swan on a calyx-krater in a Miami private collection (Trendall, Handbook, fig. 205; RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 150, no. 18/65a, pl. 37, 2); and the Apollo-with-swan on the painter’s name-vase in Naples (inv. 3253: RVAp, II, p. 495, no. 18/38; Trendall, Handbook, fig. 203): The Pan on the Florida vase is in the same position and posture as Sikyon, and the ornament is also similar, as is the scene on the reverse. The little Pan on the Boston krater has a parallel on the painter’s calyx-krater in Matera (inv. 12538: RVAp, II, p. 501, no. 65), which also has the same subsidiary ornament; see F. G. LoPorto, MeditArch 4, (1991), pl. 2. For the turned legs and ornament of Adrastos’s throne, compare a pelike by the Darius Painter in the Macinagrossa collection, Bari (RVA, II, p. 491, no. 18/29, pl. 175.2).
    For the relaxed Fury, compare the garb and posture of the one on Leningrad 4323 (RVAp, II, p. 487, no. 18/18, pl. 173, 2); for Furies in South Italian vase-painting, see H. Sarian, in Iconographie classique et identités régionales (BCH, Suppl. 14, 1986), pp. 25-35. For the grouping of Pelopeia and Amphithea, compare Hercuba and her attendant on London 1900.5-19.1 (RVAp, II, p. 489, no. 18/19, pl. 174. 1). For the necklace hanging from a branch, compare the Boston Alkmene krater, catalogue no. 43.
    The Darius Painter was perhaps the most talented and literate of all Apulian vase-painters. Recent years have seen a host of new vases by the Darius Painter with rare or unique mythological subjects, many of them apparently inspired by lost works of the great Athenian tragedians. This vase and the two following it are among the most splendid of the new mythological works; others include a calyx-krater with the daughters of Anios in a Miami private collection (see ref. above); a volute-krater at Princeton with Medea at Eleusis (inv. y1983-13: RVAp Suppl. I, p. 78, no. 18/41a, pl. 12; A. D.Trendall, Record of the Art Museum, Princeton University 43:1 [1984], pp. 4-17); a loutrophoros at Princeton with the mourning Niobe (inv. y1989-29: Record of the Art Museum, Princeton University 49:1 (1990), p. 47; RVAp Suppl. II, p. 149, no. 18/56b. pl. 36, 2-3; a loutrophoros in the New York (formerly Basel) Art Market (1992) with Kreousa at Delphi (K. Schauenburg, AA [1988], pp. 633-635, figs. 1-3; RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 149. no, 18/59c, pl 37, 10; a volute-krater, also in the New York art market, with Dionysos in the Underworld (RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 508, no. 18/41a1); a large pelike in the Getty Museum, with the triumphant return of Andromeda (inv. 87. AE. 23: CVA, Malibu 4, pls. 198-200; RVAp, Suppl. II, p. 151, no. 18/69a, pl. 38, 2); three volute-kraters in Berlin, one with the raid on the camp of Rhesus (1984.39), one with the rape of Persephone (1984.40), the third with Phrixos, Helle, and the ram (1984.41) (L. Giuliani, Bildervasen aus Apulien [Berlin, 1988], pp. 6-15; RVAp, Suppl. II, pp. 146-147, nos. 18/17a, 18/17b, 18/41b, pls. 35, 1-2, 4); and several major works in Swiss public and private collections (Aellen, Cambitoglou, and Chamay, Peintre de Darius, pp. 111-175; RVAp, Suppl. II, pp. 145-153, pls. 35-38).

    (text from Vase-Painting In Italy, catalogue entry no. 41)

    Inscription

    From Left to Right ΑΙΓΙΣΘΟΣ ΘΥΕΣΤΗΣ ΑΔΡΑΣΤΟΣ ΠΕΛΟΠΕΙΑ ΑΜΦΙΘΕΑ Above: ΣΙΚΥΟΝ

    Provenance

    1986: published by A. D. Trendall in H. A. G. Brijder, et al., eds., Enthousiasmos (1986), p. 162, as: on the American market; 1986: with Fritz Bürki and Son, Zurich, Switzerland; purchased by MFA from Fritz Bürki and Son, February 25, 1987

    Credit Line

    Museum purchase with funds donated by Esther D. Anderson, Edith and Harvey Bundy, Suzanne Dworsky, Leon Levy, Josephine L. Murray, Maurice Tempelsman, Emily T. and Cornelius C. Vermeule, Shelby White, Florence and Leonard Wolsky and the John H. and Ernestine A. Payne Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 041.

    Dimensions

    Height: 63.5 cm (25 in.); diameter (rim): 58.5 (23 in.)

    Accession Number

    1987.53

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    On View

    Greek Classical Gallery (Gallery 215C)

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Fragment, probably from an amphora

    Greek, South Italian
    Late Classical to Early Hellenistic Period
    330–320 B.C.
    Painter the Ascoli Satriano Painter

    Place of Manufacture: Apulia, Italy

    Description

    Pentheus, with a sword in his right hand and a scabbard in his left (both yellow), is attacked by at least four maeanads. He is nude save for a yellow pilos and the cloak over his left arm. One maenad, perhaps Agave, reaches for the king’s head with her right hand and holds a thysos in her left; the strands of her black hair are rendered by incision. She wears a necklace, earrings, and a beaded fillet, all in white. Her bracelets are yellow. Two white pins secure her peplos at the shoulders. Her peplos, like those of her border, edged with dots. The maenad at the upper left also carries a thyrsos. At the right are the knee of a third maenad and the braceleted right hand of a fourth. In the field at the center is a pendant flower, perhaps at one end of a beaded chain.

    Although Trendall, in RVP, listed this as a work of the Boston Orestes Painter, a Paestan artist, a wealth of new vases by the Ascoli Satriano Painter has caused Trendall to reconsider his earlier attribution and assign this fragment to that northern Apulian painter, who was deeply influenced by the Paestan style. This change came too late for the attribution to be noted in the second supplement to RVAp, but in a recent letter Trendall compares the style, including dotted borders and pendant flowers, of two oinochoai: Foggia 129328 (RVAp, II, p. 720, no. 880), and a vase in the Swiss art market (RVAp, Suppl. I, p. 127, no. 880a).

    The scene on the Boston fragment may have been inspired by a tragedy of Aeschylus, Pentheus, although the Bacchae of Euripides is perhaps a more likely candidate. The subject had a long history in vase-painting, and no direct theatrical inspiration need have been involved. For the subject, see Caskey and Beazley, vol. II, pp. 1-3; Brommer, Vasenlisten, 3rd ed., pp. 485-486; A. Greifenhagen, Berliner Museen, N. F. 16 (1966), pp. 2-6; and M. Padgett, in Antikenmuseum Berlin, Euphronios der Maler, exhib. cat. (Milan, 1991), pp. 174-177.

    Interior unglazed; glaze has slightly metallic luster; surface freckled; added white on chiton belts, necklace, bracelets, shoulder-pins, berries earring, fillet, sword, pilos, and scabbard; Agave’s hair incised.

    entry from Vase-Painting in Italy, no. 54

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Robert E. Hecht, Jr.; purchased by MFA from Robert E. Hecht, Jr., June 25, 1986

    Credit Line

    Dora S. Pintner Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 054.

    Dimensions

    Height x width: 10.8 x 14.5 cm (4 1/4 x 5 11/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    1986.263

    Medium or Technique

    Ceramic, Red Figure

    Not On View

    Collections

    Europe, The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info
  • Griffin with the wheel of Nemesis

    Roman
    Imperial Period

    Description

    A griffin is seated, with his raised right paw and foreleg placed on a wheel with four spokes. The figure is set on an oval plinth. The tip of the left wing and a small segment of the plinth have been restored. Even, light green patina.

    Provenance

    By date unknown: with Jerome M. Eisenberg, 1000 Madison Avenue, New York 10021 (said to come from Egypt); gift of Jerome M. Eisenberg to MFA, May 10, 1967

    Credit Line

    Gift of Jerome M. Eisenberg

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Greek, Etruscan, & Roman Bronzes (MFA), no. 173; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 121 (additional published references).

    Dimensions

    Height: 6 cm (2 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    67.645

    Medium or Technique

    Bronze

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Sculpture

    More Info
  • Fragmentary section of casket with Triumph of Dionysos

    Roman
    Late Imperial Period
    about A.D. 350–400

    Description

    Fragment of the bottom of casket with Dionysos (now lost) led by a centaur wagon, and accompanied by maenads, satyrs, and pan, as well as Ariadne in her own wagon.

    Above and below, heavy rope-fillet molding.

    Details: Female centaurs (pulling the wagon on right end of 1970.491), she blows oliphant. Pan capers over shield (?) or enriched wineskin (?), a Maenad beyond holds a similar object in her outstretched hands. A satyr with nebris and panther-shorts (?) drags a panther to right by tail; he holds a pedum in left hand. At right, Maenad with covered kylix revels to right.

    Note that an additional section of the casket was acquired in 1977 (1977.170).

    Provenance

    By 1970: with Mohammad Yeganeh, Antiken, Telemannstrasse 5, 6 Frankfurt am Main, Germany; purchased by MFA from Mohammad Yeganeh, November 10, 1970

    Credit Line

    Otis Norcross Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Arretine Pottery (MFA), pls. 39-40.

    Dimensions

    Height x width: 4 3/4 x 1 1/4 in. (12 x 3.2 cm)

    Accession Number

    1970.491

    Medium or Technique

    Silver, beaten rather than cast

    Not On View

    Collections

    The Ancient World

    Classifications

    Vessels

    More Info

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