Terracotta amphora (jar)

Attributed to the Amasis Painter

ca. 550 B.C.
Greek, Attic
Terracotta; black-figure
H. 15 3/8 in. (39.1 cm) diameter 6 7/8 in. (17.5 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1906
Accession Number:
  • Description

    Obverse and reverse, warrior putting on armor

    Although both sides of this amphora show the same subject, the Amasis Painter has introduced subtle variations in the sequence of action and in detail. On one side, a warrior holds a greave (shin guard); on the other side, he adjusts it on his leg. A nude youth with a spear and a wreath is replaced in the opposite scene by a woman with a spear and an aryballos (oil flask). This is an interesting conflation of two important themes because both the wreath and the oil flask are usually associated with athletes, not warriors. The male figures have the same long hair and proud stance as contemporary marble statues and reliefs of kouroi (youths) and embody the same ideal of young manhood.

  • References

    Richter, Gisela M. A., Marjorie J. Milne, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1922. Shapes of Greek Vases. New York.

    Richter, Gisela M. A. and Marjorie J. Milne. 1935. Shapes and Names of Athenian Vases. New York: Plantin Press, pp. 3-4, fig. 3.

    Richter, Gisela M. A. 1953. Handbook of the Greek Collection. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, pp. 58, 198, pl. 38a.

    Richter, Gisela M. A., Grace Crowfoot, and Donald Benjamin Harden. 1956. "Part I: Ceramics from c. 700 B.C. to the Fall of the Roman Empire." A History of Technology: The Mediterranean Civilizations and the Middle Ages, c. 700 B.C. to c. A.D. 1500, Vol. 2, Charles Singer, Eric John Holmyard, Alfred Rupert Hall, and Trevor Williams, eds. Oxford: Clarendon Press, p. 265, pl. 18a.

    Beazley, John D. 1978[1956]. Attic Black-Figure Vase-Painters. New York: Hacker Art Books, pp. 150, 687, no. 2, Add. 1, pp. 150-58.

    von Bothmer, Dietrich and Alan L. Boegehold. 1985. The Amasis Painter and His World: Vase-Painting in Sixth-Century B.C. Athens. Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, no. 1, pp. 70-73, 79, 105.

    Beazley, John D. 1986[1951]. The Development of Attic Black Figure, Sather Classical Lectures, Vol. 24, 2nd edn. University of California: University of California Press, pp. 54, 101, n. 49, pl. 53.

    Brijder, Herman A. G. 1991. Siana Cups II: The Heidelberg Painter, Allard Pierson Series: Studies in Ancient Civilization, Vol. 8. Amsterdam: Allard Pierson Museum, pp. 419-20, 432.

    Picón, Carlos A. 2007. Art of the Classical World in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Greece, Cyprus, Etruria, Rome New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, no. 79, pp. 80, 421.

  • See also