On the body, Achilles and Ajax playing board game at Troy On the shoulder, chariot departing
The scene on the body depicts one of the most popular subjects in Greek art, mainly vase-painting, between about 540 and 480 B.C. Over 150 occurrences are known. Remarkably, the original composition survives on an amphora in the Vatican Museums. The artist was Exekias, the potter and painter whose work represents the height of black-figure painting. In this variant, the painter has placed Athena stage center as the two primary Greek heroes of the Trojan War while away their time playing a game in which pieces are moved according to the roll of dice.
von Bothmer, Dietrich. 1957. "Greek Vases from the Hearst Collection." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, 15(7): pp. 166, 174.
Beazley, John D. 1971. Paralipomena: Additions to Attic Black-Figure Vase-Painters and to Attic Red-Figure Vase-Painters [2nd edition]. p. 161, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
von Bothmer, Dietrich. 1972. "Greek Vase Painting: An Introduction." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, 31(1): no. 13, pp. 31, 34, 67.
von Bothmer, Dietrich. 1972. Greek Vase Painting: An Introduction. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Moore, Mary B. 1980. "Exekias and Telamonian Ajax." American Journal of Archaeology, 84(4): p. 421 n. 33.