Obverse, Hephaistos on mule among satyrs and maenads Reverse, Dionysos among satyrs and maenads
The symposium, conventionally interpreted as a drinking party, was a well-established feature of Greek—particularly Athenian— society. For over a century, representations on vases document that wine, women, and song were central ingredients. Even more worthy of emphasis, however, is the importance of the symposium as an institution that permitted citizens to gather, to transact business, and—as Plato's dialogue makes clear—to engage in serious discussion. An essential piece of equipment for the symposium was the vase in which the wine was diluted with water and from which it was served. In black-figure vase-painting before the last quarter of the sixth century B.C., the decoration of large, elaborate kraters tended to be mythological. (On red-figure vases, the symposium itself was often depicted.) This krater is of exceptional significance because it is one of the first on which wine, women, and song are presented, albeit in a mythological guise. The subject, which encompasses both sides of the vase, is the return of Hephaistos to Mount Olympos, the home of the gods. Hephaistos, the divine smith, was the son of Hera and Zeus. Because he was born lame, his mother cast him out of Olympos. In revenge, Hephaistos fashioned a throne that held Hera fast when she sat on it. only Hephaistos could release her. Therefore, he was given wine and escorted to Olympos by Dionysos, the god of wine, accompanied by his male and female followers, the satyrs and maenads.
#1021. Terracotta column-krater (bowl for mixing wine and water), Part 1
1021. Terracotta column-krater (bowl for mixing wine and water), Part 1
1447. Terracotta column-krater (bowl for mixing wine and water), Part 2
This artwork is meant to be viewed from right to left. Scroll left to view more.
Use your arrow keys to navigate the tabs below, and your tab key to choose an item
Title:Terracotta column-krater (bowl for mixing wine and water)
Artist:Attributed to Lydos
Date:ca. 550 BCE
Dimensions:Overall: 22 3/16 x 27 1/4 in. (56.4 x 69.3 cm); diameter 23 1/16 in. (58.6 cm)
Credit Line:Fletcher Fund, 1931
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1932–1933. "Lydos." Metropolitan Museum Studies, 4(2): no. 1, pp. 169–74, figs. 2–4, pl. 1.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1932. "A Black-Figured Vase Attributed to Lydos." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 27(3): pp. 74–9, figs. 1–2, 4–5.
Richter, Gisela M. A. and Marjorie J. Milne. 1935. Shapes and Names of Athenian Vases. p. 7, figs. 43–44, New York: Plantin Press.
Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1936. A Guide to the Collections, Part 1: Ancient and Oriental Art, 2nd edn. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1939. Guide to the Collections: Ancient and Oriental Art--Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Greek and Roman Far Eastern, Near Eastern Oriental Armor, Vol. 1, World's Fair Edition. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1944, 1949. Greek Painting: The Development of Pictoral Representation from Archaic to Graeco-Roman Times. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1953. Handbook of the Greek Collection. pp. 59, 199, pl. 39a, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
Beazley, John D. 1956. Attic Black-figure Vase-painters. pp. 108, 684, no. 5, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
von Bothmer, Dietrich. 1957. Amazons in Greek Art. p. 114, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Bandinelli, Ranuccio Bianchi. 1958. Enciclopedia dell'Arte Antica, Classica e Orientale, Vol. 4. p. 1003, fig. 1192, Rome: Instituto della Enciclopedia Italiana.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1970. "The Department of Greek and Roman Art: Triumphs and Tribulations." Metropolitan Museum Journal, 3: pp. 83, 86, 88, fig. 25.
Beazley, John D. 1971. Paralipomena: Additions to Attic Black-Figure Vase-Painters and to Attic Red-Figure Vase-Painters [2nd edition]. p. 43, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
von Bothmer, Dietrich. 1972. Greek Vase Painting: An Introduction. no. 10, pp. 4, 21, 69, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
von Bothmer, Dietrich. 1972. "Greek Vase Painting." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 31(1): no. 7, pp. 4, 20–21, 67.
Robertson, Martin and Cambridge University Press. 1975. A History of Greek Art, Vols. 1 and 2. p/ 131, Cambridge, England.
Beazley, John D. 1986. The Development of Attic Black Figure, Vol. 24, 2nd ed.. p. 99 [p. 41 n. 22], pls. 36, 37, 1, Berkeley: University of California Press.
Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC). 1986. Vol. 3: Atherion-Eros. "Dionysos," p. 471, no. 563, pl. 364, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.
Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC). 1988. Vol. 4: Eros-Herakles. "Hephaistos," p. 640, no. 138a, pl. 393, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.
Lonsdale, Steven. 1993. Dance and Ritual Play in Greek Religion. pp. 84–5, fig. 9, Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press.
Howard Kathleen. 1994. Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide: Works of Art Selected by Philippe De Montebello. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Valavanis, Panos and Dimitris Kourkoumelis. 1996. Drinking Vessels. pp. 58–59, Athens: The Hatzimichalis Estate.
Isler-Kerényi, Cornelia. 2004. "I satiri, il vino e il teatro." Dioniso, 3: pp. 274–5, figs. 1-3.
Picón, Carlos A. 2007. Art of the Classical World in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Greece, Cyprus, Etruria, Rome no. 86, pp. 84, 422, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Kreuzer, Bettina. 2009. "Warum heute noch Malerzuschreibungen? Das Beispiel Lydos." Hermeneutik der Bilder. Beiträge zur Ikonographie und Interpretation griechischer Vasenmalerei [Beihefte zum Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum, vol. 4], Stefan Schmidt and Dr. John H. Oakley, eds. pp. 146–7, figs. 4a-b, München: C. H. Beck.
Moore, Mary B. 2010. "Hephaistos Goes Home: An Attic Black-figured Column-krater in the Metropolitan Museum." Metropolitan Museum Journal, 45: pp. 26–27, 32–33, figs. 7–8, 10, 20.
Adam-Velenē, Polyxenē. 2011. Il dono di Dioniso : mitologia del vino nell'Italia centrale (Molise) e nella Grecia del Nord (Macedonia). The Gift of Dionysos. pp. 121–3, fig. 3, Salonicco (Thessalonikē): Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki.
Heesen, Pieter. 2011. Athenian little-master cups. p. 163; nn. 873, 982, Amsterdam: Pieter Heesen.
Metropolitan Museum of Art. 2020. ART = Discovering Infinite Connections in Art History. p. 068, New York: Phaidon Press.
Arbeid, Barbara, Elena Ghisellini, and Maria Rosaria Luberto. 2022. Ho Pais Kalos : Scritti Di Archeologia Offerti a Mario Iozzo per Il suo Sessantacinquesimo Compleanno p. 141, n. 42, Monte Compatri (RM): Edizioni Espera.
The Met Collection API is where all makers, creators, researchers, and dreamers can connect to the most up-to-date data and public domain images for The Met collection. Open Access data and public domain images are available for unrestricted commercial and noncommercial use without permission or fee.
We continue to research and examine historical and cultural context for objects in The Met collection. If you have comments or questions about this object record, please complete and submit this form. The Museum looks forward to receiving your comments.
The Museum's collection of Greek and Roman art comprises more than 30,000 works ranging in date from the Neolithic period to the time of the Roman emperor Constantine's conversion to Christianity in A.D. 312.