- Museum number
Pottery: red-figured skyphos (drinking-cup): Triptolemos takes the gift of corn to mankind.
In the centre Triptolemos, a youth with long hair wreathed, hair on cheek, long chiton with studded sleeves, and mantle, is seated to right in the winged car, holding up in his left a bunch of corn, in his right a phiale decorated with dotted triangles and egg pattern: over him, his name, TPIΠΠTOΛEMOΣ, Τριππτόλεμος. The seat of the car, which, with the foot-rest, is edged with egg pattern, is supported by a central stay in the form of an Ionic column; a side post of similar form, rising from the floor of the car, supports the handrail decorated with billet pattern; the floor is edged with a pattern of zigzags. From the axle rises on each side a great wing, and between wing and wheel is an arching snake with wide open toothed jaws and protruding tongue, striking to right. On the right Persephone stands with torch in left and holding out a fluted oinochoe in right as if to pour into the phiale of Triptolemos: she wears a long chiton with studded sleeves, a bordered mantle, earrings, necklace of beads, and hair fastened in crobylos with a radiated stephane decorated with tendril pattern. On the left her name, ΦΕPΟΦΑΤΤΑ, Φερόφαττα. Behind Triptolemos stands Demeter, holding out ears of corn in left and torch in right, dressed in a long chiton with studded sleeves, mantle, and earrings, with hair fastened in crobylos with a stephane ornamented with cable pattern and an embattled edge: her mantle is richly decorated with horizontal rows of patterns and subjects in black silhouette, the whole edged with a border of palmettes inside a tendril pattern; the subjects represented are: (lowest row) small winged figures running over a row of dolphins plunging: eagles flying: chariot race: foot race (all these move to right): dolphins and birds vertical: panthers crouching to left. On the right her name, ΔΕΜΕΤΡΕ, Δημήτρη for Αημήτηρ. Behind Persephone stands Eleusis, the personification of the locality; with her left she raises the skirt of her chiton, and in her right holds a flower to her face: she wears a dress and headdress like that of Persephone, but her mantle has no pattern, and is passed over the back of her head: on the right her name, EΛEΥΣΙΣ, Έλευσίς. Behind her, and beneath the right handle, Eumolpos is seated to right, on a square base, holding a sceptre upright in his left: with right hand on side he turns to look at the scene on the left: he is bearded, and wreathed with olive, and wears a long chiton and bordered mantle: his seat is divided in four by two diagonals, and the upper and lower triangles so formed are black, the others red: on it is a cushion decorated with dotted chequers. Beside him, EYMOΛΠΠOΣ, Έύμολππος. At his feet is a swan to right, perhaps following Zeus, who walks to right, dressed as Eumolpos, and has sceptre in left, but in right holds a winged thunderbolt; on left his name, ΖEΥΣ, Ζευς. He is preceded by Dionysos, similarly dressed, but holding upright in his left a long ivy staff, with three branches sprouting from the top: he has an ivy wreath: his mantle, wound close around his body, covers his right arm: on the left, his name, ΔΙΟNYΣΟΣ, Διόνυσος. Next on right is Amphitrite, in long chiton with colpos, mantle which she draws over her shoulder with her right hand, earrings, necklace of dots, and hair looped up with a fillet: in her left she holds against her body a dolphin: over her, her name, ΑNΦΙΤPIΤΕ, Άνφιτρίτη: she moves to left, but looks back at Poseidon (under the handle), who is seated to left on a cushioned diphros, but who looks round towards Triptolemos: he is bearded and wreathed with olive, and wears a long chiton and mantle: his long hair is looped up: in his left he holds a dolphin, in his right a sceptre, the top of which is lost in the handle of the vase. On the right, his name, ΠΟΣΕΙΔΟΝ, Ποσειδών.
Incised lines are used for ears of corn. Purple for inscriptions, snake's tongue, stalks of corn, flame, flower, and wreath of Eumolpos, also cord attaching foot-rest to car. Brown inner markings, hair on cheek, and upper markings of jug. Eye archaic, sometimes with dotted pupil. The finger-nails of Dionysos are drawn in. Below, two thin red lines. On the left handle is incised HIEPON ΕΠΟΙΕΣΕΝ, Ίερων εποίησεν.
- Production date
- 500BC-480BC (circa)
Diameter: 26.50 centimetres
Height: 21.30 centimetres
Width: 36.50 centimetres (with handles)
- Curator's comments
- BM Cat. Vases
Mon. dell’ Inst, ix, pl. 43; Ann. dell’ Inst. 1872, p. 227; Bull. dell’ Inst. 1872, p. 41; Wiener Vorlegebl. A, 7; Baumeister, p. 185, fig. 1958; Harrison and Verrall, p. 1, fig. 8; Daremberg and Saglio, s. v. Elensinia, p. 545, fig. 2629; Rayet and Collignon, pl. 9 (the first four figures); Murray, Designs from Greek Vases, p. 15, fig. 8 (the same); Overbeck, Kunstmyth. Demeter, p. 543, no. 49, Atlas, pl. xv, 22, a, b; Roscher ii, p. 1369, fig. 16, and p. 2086; Rubensohn, Die Mysterienheiligth, p. 32; Klein, Meistersig2 p. 171, no. 18; Hartwig, Meistersch. p. 282; Kretschmer, Vaseninschr. p. 173.
- On display (G15/dc6)
- Exhibition history
2016, 4 May-4 Sep, Frankfurt am Main, Liebieghaus Skulpturensammlung, Athens: The Triumph of Imagery
- Acquisition date
- Greek and Roman
- Registration number