Side B: Poseidon

Side B: Gigantomachy with Ares and Poseidon

Collection: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Summary: Side A: Gigantomachy with Herakles and Zeus in a chariotSide B: Gigantomachy with Ares (?) and Poseidon
Ware: Attic Black Figure
Painter: Attributed to the Three-Line Group
Date: ca. 530 BC

H 0.344 m D 0.214 m

Primary Citation: ABV, 667-668; Beazley Addenda 1, 70; Beazley Addenda 2, 148
Shape: Panathenaic amphora
Beazley Number: 306438
Period: High Archaic


There are chips on the rim and handles, and spalls especially on Side B.

Decoration Description:

Side A: A gigantomachy is depicted. On the far left stands Athena, in profile to the right. She wears a peplos and chlamys which is fastened over her breast with a clasp; the stripes and dots on her garments are painted red, while the rows of dots and dot circles are painted white. Her aegis is decorated with white dots, and the fillet on her high-crested Attic helmet is red. She carries a spear and round shield, and her skin is painted white. In front of her legs is the vertical inscription *A*Q*E*N*A*I*A ("Athena"). In front of her is the chariot of Zeus, driven by Herakles. It is in the act of wheeling around, so that it and the horses are seen in three-quarter frontal view. Herakles wears a red chiton under his lionskin, which has white painted teeth. He carries a quiver fastened by crossed white baldrics on his back, and holds his club, the reins, and a goad. Over the heads of the horses is the inscription [epig-rough]*E*R*A*K*L*E*S ("Herakles"). Of Zeus, only his red beard and some of his drapery are extant. His name is inscribed in front of Athena's face, *Z*E*U*S ("Zeus"). The four horses are black, with red tails and chest straps (the far left horse also has a red mane); the dots on the chest straps are white, as are the teeth of the far right and left horses. Under the horses lies a giantess or Amazon, who has fallen on her back and left side. Her right leg is pulled up, her left arm extended; she supports herself feebly on her left elbow and right hand. Her skin is painted white, and she wears a corselet, red-striped chiton, and red fillet on her high-crested Attic helmet. In front of the horses Hermes walks to the right. His hair is tied in a krobylos, and he wears a red petasos with upturned brim, chlamys with red stripes and dots, and a chiton with white dots. His boots are painted red and white. He carries his caduceus in his right hand, and looks over his shoulder at the chariot. His name is inscribed [epig-rough]*E*R*M*E*S ("Hermes").

Side B: The gigantomachy is continued here. On the left stands a bearded warrior who wears a short red-striped chiton over a corselet, a high-crested Corinthian helmet, and greaves. He carries a sheathed sword suspended from a baldric, two spears, and a Boeotian shield with white-painted details; he turns his head to look over his shoulder. In front of him is a chariot, wheeling around as the one on Side A. The red-bearded charioteer wears a red fillet and a long white chiton; he carries a Boeotian shield on his back. In the chariot with him is a helmeted figure (maybe Ares?) who wears a corselet. The horses are black with similar details as those on Side A; under them lies a fallen bearded warrior. He is on his knees and left elbow. He wears a red-striped short chiton, a corselet and a high-crested Corinthian helmet. In front of the horses Poseidon strides to the right. He has a red beard and wears a red fillet in his hair; he wears a chiton and white-dotted himation, and carries his trident. As he points the way with his thumb and fingers extended, he turns to look back. Over his head is the inscription [epig-rough]*I*P*O*N *K*A*L*O*S ("Hippon is beautiful"). Under each handle is a spectator seated to the left: Side A/B, a white-skinned woman is seated on a folding stool, wearing a red fillet and himation with red stripes and dots; Side B/A, a red bearded man sits on a black or stone, wearing a red-striped himation, white petasos, and boots.

The neck of the vessel is decorated with a double palmette-lotus chain, and on the shoulder is an enclosed tongue pattern (alternate tongues are painted red). Above the foot are rays, surmounted by a meander, then a lotus bud chain, then another meander, all separated by triple lines.


Side A, over the respective figures: *A*Q*E*N*A*I*A ("Athena"), [epig-rough]*E*R*A*K*L*E*S ("Herakles"), *Z*E*U*S ("Zeus"). [epig-rough]*E*R*M*E*S ("Hermes"). Side B: [epig-rough]*I*P*O*N *K*A*L*O*S ("Hippon is beautiful").

Collection History:

H.L. Pierce Fund, 1901.

Sources Used:

CVA, Boston 1, USA 14, pls. 36, 38.1 & .2

Other Bibliography:

Brommer 1956, 38, 123; Caskey 1922, 55; Hambridge 1920, 129, fig. 8; Klein 1898, 35, no. 1