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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

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  • Object type

  • Museum number


  • Description

    Pottery: red-figured amphora of Panathenaic shape.
    (a) A reveller (?). A nude wreathed ephebos walks with bent knees to right, looking back, and holding out by one handle in his right a large diota. Over his left shoulder he carries a knotted staff. A mantle is festooned at his back, one end hanging over the end of his staff, the other end passing over his left elbow.
    (b) A similar figure, also walking to right and looking back, as he pours wine on the ground from an oinochoe in his right hand: with his left arm he clasps to his chest a large diota, around which a black wreath is painted, hanging from the handles down the body: in his hand he carries a cotyle painted in black silhouette. Each figure has whiskers.
    Large severe style. Purple wreaths and wine. Brown inner markings and whiskers. Eye in archaic type, with inner angle open. Hair edged with dots. Each design is enclosed within a panel composed of four double red lines, and bounded at the top by a band of tongue. Around the neck, a linked lotus bud pattern: around the bottom of the body, rays.


  • Producer name

  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 500BC-480BC
  • Production place

  • Materials

  • Ware

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 35.56 centimetres
  • Bibliography

    • Old Catalogue 723 bibliographic details
    • Vase E259 bibliographic details
    • CVA British Museum 3 III Ic Pl. 5, 2 bibliographic details
  • Condition

    Broken, but designs intact: one handle restored.

  • Acquisition name

  • Department

    Greek & Roman Antiquities

  • Registration number



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Object reference number: GAA7234

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