Drinking cup (kantharos)

Greek, South Italian
Late Classical - Early Hellenistic Period
about 330–320 B.C.

Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia

Catalogue Raisonné

Vase-Painting in Italy (MFA), no. 061.


14.2 cm (5 9/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Ceramic, Red Figure

Not On View


Europe, The Ancient World



Side A: Hermes (Paris?) seated to right holding a large basket.
Side B: Athena seated to left, head turned. Holds two large dishes in right hand.
One handle restored.
There are modeled female heads, facing inward, where the handles meet the lip. In the middle of the stem is a torus molding. The hollow foot is flaring and grooved at top and bottom.

Attributed to the Baltimore Painter
about 330-320 B.C.
A: Hermes is seated to the right, his right leg extended. He holds his yellow caduceus in his right hand and in his left a large basket containing a cake. He wears boots and a chlamys; his yellow petasos hangs behind his head. A large white hound stands at his side and faces in the same direction, its head held high as though sniffing the wind. A fillet hangs in the field at left, and there is a vertical branch at right.
B: Athena is seated to the left on a dotted groundline, holding two stacked phialai in her right hand. She wears a peoplos, kekryphalos, shoes, bracelets, earrings, and the aegis, the last with white spots and snakes. Her left hand rests on her shield, and on her lap is her crested Corinthian helmet; both shield and helmet are tinted yellow. Another phiale is on the ground near her seat. A small plant grows at lower right, and a fillet hangs at upper right. At left is a vertical branch.
There is egg-pattern on the lip and on the cul between the handles. The foot, stem, and lower body are unglazed.
The Baltimore Painter was a prolific painter of both large and small vases, the large ones with mythological or funerary subjects or both, the smaller ones dedicated to genre. His workshop was at Canosa, where he was influenced by the Patera Painter. He is especially noted for the elaborate decoration of his volute-kraters, on which the figure decoration sometimes extends to the foot. His workshop continued in operation in the last decades of the century under the White Sakkos Painter. For recent studies of the Baltimore Painter, see the bibliography in RVAp, Suppl. II, Part 1, pp. xxiii-xxiv. For an Athena by this painter, with similar helmet and aegis, compare Bari, Macinagrossa collection 26 (RVAp, II, p. 871, no. 27/57, pl. 333, 2; Trendall, Handbook, fig. 253.)


By date unknown: Edward Austin Collection; gift of Edward Austin to MFA, August 19, 1876

Credit Line

Gift of Edward Austin