Exhibitions/ Art Object

Reproduction of the "Shield frieze" fresco

Restored by Emile Gilliéron père, in 1911 or early 1912.
Late Helladic IIIA-B
ca. 1325–1250 B.C.
watercolor on paper
Overall: 39 1/2 x 32 in. (100.3 x 81.3 cm)
Credit Line:
Dodge Fund, 1912
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 171
Excavated 1910 in the Inner Forecourt of the Tiryns palace.

The original restoration was done by E. Gillieron, pere from over two hundred fragments for the German Archaeological Society. Evans used it as the basis for his grand restoration of the shield frescoes in the Domestic Quarter at Knossos (executed by E. Gillieron, fils) where only very small fragments of large-scale shields were preserved. The distinctive figure-of-eight shield motif is an important visual link between Homer's Age of Heroes and Late Bronze Age Greece. It has been suggested that the green pigment of the original fresco was made from powdered malachite imported from Egypt.

The original is in the National Archaeological Museum, Athens.
Schliemann, Heinrich. 1885. Tiryns: The Prehistoric Palace of the Kings of Tiryn. pl. V, New York: Charles Scribner's Sons.

Richter, Gisela M. A. 1912. "Reproductions of Minoan Frescoes." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 7(12): p. 117.

Richter, Gisela M. A. 1927. Handbook of the Classical Collection. p. 33, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Evans, Arthur J. 1930. The Palace of Minos: A Comparative Account of the Successive Stages of the Early Cretan Civilization as Illustrated by the Discoveries at Knossos, Vol. 3. pp. 304-8, fig. 197, London: Macmillan & Co.

Immerwahr, Sara Anderson. 1990. Aegean Painting in the Bronze Age. p. 203, Ti no. 10, pl. XIX, University Park and London: Pennsylvania State University Press.

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