Pyxis (round box with cover) depicting a herdsman with six Muses

Classical Period
about 460–450 B.C.
the Hesiod Painter

Place of Manufacture: Greece, Attica, Athens

Catalogue Raisonné

Caskey-Beazley, Attic Vase Paintings (MFA), no. 037.


Height: 17.5 cm (6 7/8 in.); diameter: 15 cm (5 7/8 in.) (JA - checked 5/6/14)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Ceramic, white ground technique

On View

Ancient Greece: Greek Theater Gallery (Gallery 215C)


The Ancient World



Although this is the “name-vase” of the Hesiod Painter, it is now thought that the poet shown with a lyre seated on an elaborate stool is not Hesiod, but Archilochus, who was a cow herd before called by the Muses to poetry. A youth leading a cow is shown on the other side. Muses surround the male figures, standing and sitting, and carrying various instruments (R-L from poet: round-based kithara [phorminx], aulos [pipes], pan pipes [syrinx], chelys lyre, and another round-based kithara [phorminx]); the scene is drawn in brown and purple on a white slip ground.
Lid: Cover decorated with maeander and palmettes, black and red.


By date unknown: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: presumably from Eretria); 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