Obverse, scene from a phlyax play. Reverse, three youths
The representation shows the structure of a stage at the far right. A hag with a dead goose and a basket containing a kid proclaims something to the effect of "I shall hand him over." An old man with arms raised pirouettes stage center. Looking to his right he says, "He has tied my hands up high." The actor with a long staff wears the costume of a nude figure and probably is the caricature of an athlete; his garments are thrown over the shoulder of the small figure at the upper left. The inscription associated with the athlete makes no sense and has been considered a magic spell responsible for the raised arms of his neighbor. Above the "athlete" is the word "tragedy," and a mask hangs in the background. A recent interpretation makes the two male figures accomplices about to steal the hag's provisions or defy her threats to turn them in. The inscriptions, written in Attic Greek, indicate that this farce originated on the Greek mainland rather than in Southern Italy.