Miniature terracotta squat lekythos (oil flask) with siren

Attributed to the Seireniske Painter
mid-5th century B.C.
Greek, Attic
Terracotta; red-figure
H. 3 5/16 in. (8.5 cm.)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1941
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 172
In Greek mythology, sirens, human-headed birds known for their beautiful voices, were offen associated with the afterlife, and they appear frequently in Classical Greek funerary art. In addition to their mournful depictions on grave stelai, sirens were also an appropriate decoration for a lekythos, a type of vase often connected with death and burial ritual.
From before 1926 and until 1941, collection of Albert Gallatin, New York; acquired in 1941, purchased from Albert Gallatin.
Hoppin, James C. and Albert Gallatin. 1926. Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum, USA 1, Hoppin and Gallatin Collections. p. 104, Gallatin pl. 60.2, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Chase, George H. and Mary Z. Pease. 1942. Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum. United States of America 8. Fogg Museum and Gallatin Collections 1. pl. 60, 2, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Beazley, John D. 1963[1942]. Attic Red-figure Vase-painters, Vols. 1 and 2, 2nd ed. pp. 487, 704, nos. 56, 68, Oxford: Clarendon Press.

Karoglou, Kyriaki. 2018. "Dangerous Beauty : Medusa in Classical Art." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 75(3): p. 38, fig. 56.