Obverse, woman playing lyre and two women listening Reverse, women
The scene here has an intimacy that is exceptional in Greek vase-painting. In an indoor setting, a seated woman plays the lyre. Before her stand two women, one of whom rests her chin and hands on the shoulder of the other. The listeners are enraptured by what they hear. All of the elements in the representation reflect daily life in mid-fifth century B.C. Athens. It is nonetheless tempting to see the subject in more specific terms. One scholar has suggested that the women might be muses. Another possibility is that the performer is the poetess Sappho, who appears on several black-figured and red-figured vases.
#1054: Terracotta bell-krater (bowl for mixing wine and water), Part 1
#1456: Terracotta bell-krater (bowl for mixing wine and water), Part 2
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1925. "Three Red-Figured Greek Vases." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 20(11): pp. 264–65, fig. 6.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1946. Attic Red-Figured Vases: A Survey. pp. 92, 125, figs. 32i-j, 90, New Haven: Yale University Press.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1953. Handbook of the Greek Collection. pp. 100, 240, pl. 80i, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1958. Attic Red-Figured Vases: A Survey, Revised Edition, 2nd edn. pp. 92, 125, figs. 32i-j, 90, New Haven: Yale University Press.
Beazley, John D. 1963. Attic Red-figure Vase-painters, Vols. 1 and 2, 2nd ed. pp. 1075, 1703, no. 10, Add. 2, p. 1075, 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. 449, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Seebass, Tilman. 1991. "The power of music in Greek vase painting: reflections on the visualisation of rhythmos order and epaoide (enchanting song)." Imago Musicae: International Yearbook of Musical Iconography, 8: p. 31, fig. 22.
Rabinowitz, Nancy Sorkin. 2011. "Sex for Sale? Interpreting Erotica in the Havana Collection." Greek Prostitutes in the Ancient Mediterranean, 800 BCE-200 CE, Allison Glazebrook and Madeleine M. Henry, eds. pp. 138, 145, n. 45, Madison: University of Wisconsin Press.