Helios (the Sun) rises in his quadriga (4-horse chariot); above, Nyx (Night) driving away to the left and Eos (the goddess of dawn) to the right; Herakles offering sacrifice at altar.
The four lekythoi grouped here are all attributed to the same painter and are said to have been found together in a tomb in Attica. Three of them are decorated with subjects that may have seemed especially suitable for funerary offerings because they show figures moving beyond the confines of the known world. This vase shows a scene that must be related to Herakles' journey to the west, outside the ring of ocean that encircled the earth. Traveling in the bowl of the sun, he reached an otherworldly place where he had to kill the monster Geryon, a creature similar to Hades, the god of the underworld. Here Herakles offers a sacrifice to Helios as the sun rises.
Lissarrague, Francois. 1999. Vases Grecs: Les Athéniens et Leurs Images. p. 168, figs. 128–29, Paris: Hazan.
Gebauer, Jörg. 2002. Pompe und Thysia: Attische Tieropferdarstellungen auf schwarz- und rotfigurigen Vasen. cat. B 9, pp. 364–66, 435, 493, 496, 519, 547, fig. 234, Münster: Ugarit-Verlag.
Ehrhardt, Wolfgang. 2004. "Zu Darstellung und Deutung des Gestirngotterpaares am Parthenon." Jahrbuch des Deutschen Archäologischen Instituts, 119: p. 26–67, fig. 14.
Cohen, Beth. 2006. The Colors of Clay: Special Techniques in Athenian Vases no. 55, pp. 206–8, Malibu: J. Paul Getty Trust.
Maass, Michael. 2007. Maler und Dichter, Mythos, Fest und Alltag : griechische Vasenbilder aus der Sammlung des Badischen Landesmuseums Karlsruhe. p. 67, Karlsruhe: Badisches Landesmuseum Karlsruhe.
Mitchell, Alexandre G. 2009. Greek Vase-painting and the Origins of Visual Humour. pp. xi, 125–26, 282, 286, 312, fig. 56, New York: Cambridge University Press.
Mertens, Joan R. 2010. How to Read Greek Vases. no. 19, pp. 16, 24, 100–3, 112, 140, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Calder, Louise. 2011. Cruelty and Sentimentality: Greek Attitudes to Animals, 600-300 BC. no. 309, pp. 103, 199, Oxford: Archaeopress.
Lezzi-Hafter, Adrienne, Cécile Jubier-Galinier, Leslie Threatte, Jan-Matthias Müller, and Kristine Gex. 2016. Potters - Painters - Scribes : Inscriptions on Attic Vases, Rudolf Wachter, ed. p. 69, Zürich: Akanthus Verlag für Archäologie.
Hemingway, Seán, Nicole Stribling, Dr. John H. Oakley, Carol Mattusch, and Seth D. Pevnick. 2017. The Horse in Ancient Greek Art, Mr. Peter J. Schertz, ed. pp. 27–28, fig. 22, Virginia: National Sporting Library & Museum.
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