Marble grave stele with a family group

Greek, Attic

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 156

Because the framing niche that once surrounded this relief is missing, there are no inscriptions that might identify the deceased. Both the seated man and the veiled woman behind him stare straight ahead, as if the young woman who gazes down at them were invisible. Do they mourn their dead daughter? Does she mourn her dead father, or is she the sole survivor of the group? Despite its ambiguity and solemn sadness, the relief conveys an intense, though restrained, sense of family unity. Carved by a master, this grave stele is one of the most magnificent examples that have survived from the classical period.

#1042. Marble grave stele with a family group

Marble grave stele with a family group, Marble, Pentelic, Greek, Attic

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