Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Terracotta funerary plaque

ca. 520–510 B.C.
Greek, Attic
Terracotta; black-figure
Overall: 10 1/4 x 14 1/4 x 3/8 in. (26 x 36.2 x 0.9 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1954
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 154
Prothesis (laying out of the dead); below, chariot race

In the latter sixth century B.C., the elaborate series of funerary plaques set into the walls of rectangular tombs were replaced by single plaques with holes for attachment. The chariot race, a recurring theme in Attic funerary art, may evoke the funeral games held in honor of legendary heroes, such as those in book 23 of the Iliad, when Achilles honored his deceased friend Patroklos.
Shapiro, H. Alan. 1991. "The Iconography of Mourning in Athenian Art." American Journal of Archaeology, 95(4): pp. 638-9 n. 59, fig. 11.

Picón, Carlos A. 2007. Art of the Classical World in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Greece, Cyprus, Etruria, Rome no. 69, pp. 73, 419-20, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Mertens, Joan R. 2010. How to Read Greek Vases. pp. 29-30, fig. 16, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Giuliani, Luca. 2015. "How Did the Greeks Translate Traditional Tales into Images?." Images for Classicists, Loeb Classical Monographs, vol.15, Kathleen M. Coleman, ed. p. 31, fig. 2.13, Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press.

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