Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Terracotta neck-amphora (jar)

Attributed to an artist near Exekias
ca. 530 B.C.
Greek, Attic
Terracotta; black-figure
H. 15 7/8 in. (40.3 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of F. W. Rhinelander, 1898
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 155
Obverse, Apollo between Hermes and goddess
Reverse, Memnon between his Ethiopian squires

In the Trojan War, Memnon, the son of Tithonos and Eos, the goddess of the dawn, led a contingent of Ethiopians allied with the Trojans. He was killed by Achilles in a duel watched by their mothers. The present condition of the vase provides insight into the painter's working method. Memnon's shield was drawn with a compass—the circles are evident—and it would have been painted in added white directly onto the clay. Without the white, we can see the cursory sketch that the artist drew for the figure's torso.
Beazley, John D. 1956. Attic Black-figure Vase-painters. p. 149, Oxford: Clarendon Press.

Beazley, John D. 1971. Paralipomena: Additions to Attic Black-Figure Vase-Painters and to Attic Red-Figure Vase-Painters [2nd edition]. p. 62, Oxford: Clarendon Press.

Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC). 1981. Vol. 1: Aara-Aphlad. "Aithiopes," p. 415, no. 3, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.

Beazley, John D. 1986. The Development of Attic Black Figure, Vol. 24, 2nd ed.. p. 103 [p. 63 n. 27], Berkeley: University of California Press.

Kossatz-Deissmann, Anneliese, Brigitte Servais-Soyez, Fulvio Canciani, Giovannangelo Camporeale, Hans Peter Isler, Ingrid Krauskopf, Odette Touchefeu-Meynier, Marcel Le Glay, and Dr. Jean-Charles Balty. 1992. Kentauroi-Oiax, Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae, Vol. 6. Memnon, no. 6, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.

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