- Museum number
Apulian pottery red-figured calyx-krater (bowl for mixing wine and water).
Designs black on red ground, with accessories of purple, white, and yellow. Above the designs, laurel-wreath; below, the vase is fluted.
(a) 1. On the upper row: Phaedra's love-sickness: In the centre is a large couch, the legs inlaid with palmettes, and volutes and Gorgoneia above; along the front, spirals and other patterns; on the couch is a mattress with lozenge-pattern and an embroidered purple cushion at each end; beneath it is a large low stool with inlaid patterns in white, yellow, and purple. In front of it are two female attendants confronted; the one on the left holds up a large white fan in right hand and extends left hand to the other, whose hands are placed behind her head. The first wears earrings, double necklace, bracelets, long chiton and apoptygma to hips with border of dots, and sandals; her hair is gathered under a close cap. The other wears earrings, double necklace, long transparent chiton, and shoes; her hair rises in a mass over the forehead and falls on the shoulders. On the left is Phaedra, seated on a four-legged cushioned stool to right, with downcast face; her legs are crossed and her hands clasped on her right knee; her feet rest on a footstool. Her hair is gathered up under an ampyx and veil, and she wears earrings, double necklace, bracelets, long chiton, and sandals; behind her, above, hangs an Apulian sistrum, tied with a purple taenia. Before Phaedra hovers Eros to left, represented on a smaller scale, with long hair and sandals, holding out a taenia; behind her is the nurse to right, with white hair, long girt chiton, and himation, right hand supporting her chin, left extended. On the right is a paidagogos to right, with white hair and beard, short girt chiton, bordered himation, endromides with white tops turned over, and crook in left hand; his right hand is extended as if conversing with a female figure confronting him. She wears earrings, necklace, veil, long chiton, and himation; her right hand is placed under her chin. Above, behind the old man, hangs a cista, on which are painted human figures in white.
2. Combat of Centaur and Lapithae: A Centaur advancing from right with wreath, panther-skin knotted in front, ridge of thick hair below waist, and a branch in left arm, seizes Laodameia by left arm and round neck; she has just stepped down to right from a chair, which has highly ornamented legs and cushion (as above). She has long hair with stephane, earrings, triple necklace, long transparent embroidered chiton, and sandals; her right foot is placed on a footstool, and she looks back at Peirithoos, who advances and seizes the Centaur's right arm. He is beardless, with short curly hair, chlamys over left arm, and sword in right hand. Above them is incised respectively: ΛΑΟΔΑΜΕΙΑ, Λαοδάμεια, and ΠΕΙΡIΘΟΟΣ, Πειρίθοος. Behind Peirithoos is a female figure retreating and looking back, with white taenia in her hair, long bordered chiton with apoptygma, and broad white scarf floating behind, sandals, bracelet on right arm; both hands are extended in astonishment. On the right Theseus advances, beardless, with chlamys over left arm, his left hand extended to seize the Centaur, whom he is about to strike with a club in right hand; he is inscribed: ΘΗΣΕΥΣ, Θήσευς. Behind him is a female figure retreating and looking back, with ampyx, hair tied in a knot with taenia, earrings, double necklace, bracelets, long chiton and himation drawn forward in left hand, and sandals. Below the Centaur is a yellow situla or cotyle. The ground-lines of both scenes are indicated by white dots.
(b) Dionysiac group, in two rows: On the lower level, in the centre, on slightly raised ground, is a couch with embroidered hangings, on which Dionysos is seated, looking to left; he is beardless, with long hair, wreath, himation over lower limbs, and left leg doubled under him; his left arm rests on a purple embroidered cushion, and in right hand he holds out a white cantharos. At his feet is seated a female figure facing him; her hair is tied back with a string under an open cap radiated in front, and she wears double necklace, bracelet on left arm, long chiton, himation over lower limbs, and sandals; on her lap is a tympanon, and in right hand she holds out a small white prochoos. Behind her is a youthful Satyr, with fillet, bringing up a large crater (of the shape of the vase itself) in both hands; it is fluted at the top and bottom, and has three human figures painted on it, in white and yellow. Below the couch is Pan, represented on a smaller scale, beardless, and with goat's legs; he moves to left, with a branch in right hand and touches a dish of fruit with left; behind him is an incense-burner. Behind Dionysos stands a female figure with hair as the last, earrings, necklace, bracelets, long chiton, and apoptygma fastened on the shoulders, and drapery caught up over left arm; she holds up a wreath in right hand to crown Dionysos, and in her left is a thyrsos.
Above, in the centre, is the youthful Dionysos (?) seated to left, looking back, with fillet, anklets, sandals, and drapery beneath him; he holds out a phiale in right hand, and a thyrsos head downwards in left. Above him is a cluster of grapes, and on the left a tree. Beyond the tree is a female figure seated to left, looking back; her hair is tied in a knot with a string, and she wears radiated open cap, double necklace, bracelet on right arm, long girt chiton fastened on the shoulders, and sandals; thyrsos in right hand tied with a taenia, wreath in left. On the right is a similar female figure looking back (bracelet on left arm, no girdle, tympanon held up in left hand). The ground-lines are indicated throughout by white dots.
- Production date
- 350BC-340BC (circa)
Height: 76.20 centimetres
- Curator's comments
- BM Cat. Vases
Mon. dell’ Inst. 1854, pl. 16, p. 85; Engelmann and Anderson, Pictorial Atlas to Homer (Odyssey), pl. 15, fig. 93; Arch. Zeit. 1871, p. 159, and 1883, p. 62; Vogel, Scenen Eurip. Tragbd. p. 66; Furtwaengler, Eros. i. d. Vasenm. p. 38.
For side b, cf. a bronze mirror-case in Brit. Mus. (Murray, Handbook of Gk. Archaeology, p. 229), with similar scene; the subject is taken directly from Euripides' Hippolytos, 198-600.]
Additional bibliography: O. Taplin, Pots & Plays. Interactions between tragedy and Greek vase-painting in the fourth century B.C. (Los Angeles, 2007), no. 39.
- On display (G73/dc70)
- Exhibition history
2014 Jun-Oct, Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Extraordinary in the Ordinary
- Acquisition date
- Greek and Roman
- Registration number