Collection: Athens, Kerameikos (Oberlaender Museum)
Title: Dexileos Monument
Context: From Athens, Kerameikos
Findspot: Found at Athens, Kerameikos, in the family plot of Dexileos (in 1863)
Summary: Dexileos, on his horse, about to strike at the enemy
Object Function: Funerary
Sculptor: Suggested attribution to The Dexileos Sculptor
Material: Marble
Sculpture Type: Stele, relief-decorated
Category: Single monument
Style: Late Classical
Technique: High relief
Original or Copy: Original
Date: exact 394 BC
Dimensions: H. 1.75 m; W. 1.35 m; Th. 0.11-0.14 m
Scale: Under life-size
Region: Attica
Period: Late Classical

Subject Description: A young warrior, presumably Dexileos, is shown on horseback. He wears a belted chiton, a chlamys that is tied around his neck and flies, windblown, behind his back, as well as a scabbard strap drawn across his chest. While he grasps the reins with his left hand, in his upraised right hand he may have held a lance (probably a bronze attachment), which he aimed at his opponent. His hair is short. His opponent, who has fallen in front of the horse, rests on his left knee. He is shown diagonally, turned toward the viewer, although his head is shown in a 3/4-view to the left. He leans back on his shield, which he holds in his left arm, and graps a dagger, which he holds in the "Harmodios" pose (derived from the Classical Tyrannicides group), in his right hand. He is naked except for a chlamys that obscures his left forearm.

Form & Style:

Frel attributed this and two other stelai (New York 30.11.3 and Athens, NM 831) to the same hand, which he named "The Dexileos Sculptor."

The composition is known from earlier reliefs, particularly Berlin 742.

The stele, which is slightly concave, and was erected on a curved base, is crowned with a pediment.

Date Description: The inscription records that Dexileos died at the Corinthian War in the archonship of Euboulides, which corresponds to 394/93 B.C.

Condition: Nearly complete

Condition Description: There is slight damage to the akroteria, and few scratches on the relief itself.

Material Description: Pentelic (according to Clairmont)

Technique Description: Dowel holes indicate that the rider held a bronze spear in his right hand. Additional dowel holes on and around his head would have served for attachment of a wreath or a helmet.


Inscribed in large, clear letters on the base, in four lines:*D*E*C*I*L*E*W*S *L*U*S*A*N*I*O*U *Q*O*R*I*K*I*O*S*E*G*E*N*E*T*O* E*P*I *T*E*I*S*A*N*D*R*O *A*R*X*O*N*T*O*S*A*P*E*Q*A*N*E *E*P' *E*Y*B*O*L*I*D*O*E*P' *K*O*R*I*N*Q*W*I *T*W*N *P*E*N*T*E *I*P*P*E*W*N.

This relates that Dexileos, the son of Lysanias of Thorikos, born in the archonship of Teisandros, fell in the archonship of Euboulides (i.e., at age twenty), at Corinth in the front ranks.

Inscription Bibliography: IG II.2, 6217; SEG 37.165

Other Notes: Clairmont suggests that the size and grandeur of Dexileos' memorial (in comparison to those of other members of his family) indicates that hemay have been heroized, as a consequence of dying in warfare.

Sources Used: Clairmont 1993, 2.143-45 cat. 2.209 (ill.) (with additional bibliography)

Other Bibliography: Stewart 1990, 172, fig. 482; Bugh 1988, 137 f.; Knigge 1988, 111 ff., fig. 107; Vierneisel-Schlörb 1988, 111 n. 9; Ensoli 1987; Xanthos 8, 380; Clairmont 1983, 219-21, no. 68A; Harrison 1983, 104; Fuchs 1983, fig. 577; Schmaltz 1983, 103; Woysch-Méautis 1982, no. 24, pl. 6; Frel 1970a, 196 ff., pl. 10; Frel 1969, no. 167; Langenfass 1973, no. 14; Adam 1966, 60, pl. 31b-c; Dohrn 1957, 127 no. 29, pl. 12; Gardner 1896, pl. 12; Conze 1893-1922, no. 1158, pl. 248