- Museum number
Pottery: red-figured bell-krater (wine-bowl).
Designs in panels, red on black ground, with accessories of white and purple. Above the designs, (a) ivy-wreath and egg-moulding, (b) laurel-wreath; under the handles, palmette-patterns; below the designs, (a) maeander and chequer, (b) wave-pattern.
(a) Alcmene appealing to Zeus against Amphitryon: In the centre is Alcmene, seated to left on an altar, which is painted white with egg-moulding along the top and an imitation of triglyphs below (markings in yellow); in front of it is erected a pyre of round logs. She has long curls, necklace and bracelets, an embroidered veil over her head, long chiton and apoptygma embroidered with chequer, palmettes, and other patterns, girdle with white studs, and sandals; her right hand is raised in supplication. Above the design is incised: ΑΛΚΜΗΝΗ, 'Αλκμήνη. On the right is Amphitryon to left setting fire to the pyre with a torch in each hand; he is bearded, with long hair, short embroidered chiton with engrailed and palmette patterns and border of white dots, embroidered chlamys with border of chequer over his arms, endromides, and purple cross-belt from which hangs a sheathed sword; above him is incised: ΑΜΦΙΤΡΥΩΝ, Άμφιτρύων. On the left is Antenor starting back to left, looking to right, beardless, with long curls, white pilos, short sleeved embroidered chiton with borders of engrailed and wave patterns, girdle and cross-belt with astragalus pattern, embroidered chlamys with border of dots, fastened with a fibula in front, and endromides; between his legs is a fallen yellow prochoos; above him is incised: ΑΝΤΗΝΩΡ, Άντήνωρ. Over the altar is a purple and white rainbow enclosing a black space which is filled with white dots, representing drops of the rain sent in answer to Alcmene's prayer; below the pyre are two white thunderbolts, as if cast by Zeus at Amphitryon and Antenor. On each side of the rainbow, on a higher level (indicated by a wavy white line ending in a palmette), is the upper half of a female figure pouring water out of a hydria, which is indicated by black and white streaks; these two figures are the Hyades. The one on the left has long hair, a broad purple fillet with white chevron pattern, necklace, long purple chiton embroidered with white dots, and white girdle; the other has her hair tied in a club with a purple fillet embroidered with white dots, which goes twice round her head; otherwise she is attired as the first. On the left, on the same level, is the upper part of Zeus to right, bearded, with long curls, wreath, and drapery over left shoulder with chequer border, in right hand a sceptre, left extended; he is inscribed ΙΕΥΣ, Ζέυς. On the right is Eos to left, with hair gathered in a knot at the back under a purple cap embroidered with white dots, earrings, necklace, long chiton and apoptygma, embroidered with palmettes and engrailed border; in right hand she holds up a mirror; above her is inscribed ΑΩΣ, (Ή)ώς. Under the lip of the vase is incised: ΠΥΘΩΝΕΓΡΑΦΕ, Πυθων έγραφε.
(b) Dionysiac scene: In the centre is Dionysos, moving to right and looking to left, beardless, with long curls, round which is a taenia tied at the back, shoulder-belt with white dots, chlamys with border of dots over left arm, shoes, thyrsos in left hand, to which is tied a purple taenia; in right hand a wreath from which hangs a purple taenia. On either side is a Maenad dancing to right, the one on the right looking back. The one on the left has long curls, wreath, necklace, bracelets, long girt chiton and apoptygma reaching to the hips with borders of wave-pattern and dots, fastened with fibulae on the shoulders, shoes, thyrsos in right hand to which a purple taenia is tied, left hand raised. The one on the right has long curls, one of which hangs down in front of her face, wreath, necklace, bracelets, long transparent chiton embroidered with dots, which has slipped off her right shoulder, thyrsos in left hand with purple taenia tied to it, wreath in right at which she is looking. On a higher level are seen the upper parts of three figures: a youthful Satyr on the left, a youthful male figure in the centre, and Pan on the right. The Satyr wears wreath and shoulder-belt of white beads, and holds out a tympanon in left hand to the youth who faces him; he has a wreath, shoulder-belt as the Satyr, and thyrsos in left hand. Pan is to left, with small beard and moustache, wreath and shoulder-belt as the others; his body is stippled all over, and part of the goat-skin is visible; his hands are raised as if in astonishment.
- Production date
Diameter: 51.50 centimetres
Height: 56.50 centimetres
Weight: 12.50 kilograms
- Curator's comments
- BM Cat. Vases
Monuments publiés par la section française de l’Inst. Arch. pl. 10, and vol. i. p. 487 ff., pl. Β; J.H.S. xi. pls. 6, 7, p. 225, and vi. p. 40; Duruy, History of Greece, iii. p. 513; Roscher, i. pp. 247, 2755; Ann. dell’ Inst. 1872, p. 7; Jahn, Vasensamml. zu München, p. ccxxxi., note 1445; Welcker, Alte Denkm. iii. p. 300; Hirt, Bilderbuch, p. 21, and Gesch. d. bildenden Künste, p. 264; Waagen, Art and Artists in England, iii. p. 211; Michaelis, Ancient Marbles in Gt. Britain, p. 332; Morgenblatt, 1811, p. 651; Arch. Zeit. 1872, p. 93; Class. Rev. 1890, p. 135; Brunn, Künstlergesch. ii. p. 731; Klein, Meistersig. p. 210; Vogel, Scenen Eurip. Tragod. p. 33; Engelmann, Beitrdge zu Euripides (Berlin, 1882), p. 6; Rayet and Collignon, Hist. Cer. Grecque, p. 313; Murray, Handbook of Gk. Archaeology, p. 105; Overbeck, Kunstmyth. (Zeus), p. 404; C.I.Gr. 8492; Kretschmer, Gr. Vaseninschr. p. 223; Amer. Journ. of Archaeol. 1890, p. 256; Athenaeum, 1890, i. p. 313; Bloch, die zuschauenden Gotter, p. 35.
For the scene of a, cf. BM Vase F193.
For the chiton with dots, see J.H.S. xi. p. 229.
- On display (G73/dc27)
- Repaired and restored (the handle on the right side mended with lead in antiquity).
- Acquisition date
- Greek and Roman
- Registration number