Marble relief (Block XXXI) from the South frieze of the Parthenon. The frieze shows the procession of the Panathenaic festival, the commemoration of the birthday of the goddess Athena. Block XXXI represents a horse drawn chariot with a foot soldier and charioteer riding in the car. A team of four horses, with flickering manes, pulls a chariot-car. The motif of the flickering manes is picked up in the fiery crest of the helmet and in the wind-blown folds of the flying cloak of the foot soldier. The charioteer, partially visible on the left, is arched back in the car, using his body as a counter-weight to the forward thrust of the horses. He reins them to a skidding halt. Metal reins, which are now lost, were inserted in drill-holes. For more information on the chariot-race see South frieze Block XXV. The explosion of the Parthenon in 1687 damaged the South frieze the most.
© The Trustees of the British Museum
Using this image
To license images for charged-for journals and publications, and other commercial uses, please contact British Museum Images.
Contact BM images
The image will be released to you under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0) license. You can read more about the British Museum and Creative Commons here.
Download this image
If you cannot see an image that you want on the British Museum website, you can order new photography from us.
Order new image