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Bowdoin 1913.2

RED-FIGURE EYE-CUP (TYPE A)


Lent by the Bowdoin College Museum of Art; gift of E. P. Warren (1913.2)


Height: 5 5/16 in. (13.5 cm.); Diameter: 12 3/4 in. (32.4 cm.)


Broken and repaired in several places; some restoration around handles. Under foot, graffito.


Inside: hoplitodromos. An athlete wearing greaves runs to the left carrying a shield (device: raven) and a Corinthian helmet. A reserved line forms the tondo. The absence of offensive armor indicates that this is not a warrior but a hoplitodromos participating in the race in armor.

Side A: between eyes, a jumper. A nude athlete strides to the left carrying jumping weights (halteres).

Side B: between eyes, a jumper. A nude athlete carrying halteres bends down in preparation for a jump. Above is inscribed ΚΑΛΟΣ (beautiful).

The eyes have well-marked tear ducts and above them eyebrows. At the handles are palmettes. Those on side A are shut and have sixteen fronds; those on side B are open and have nine fronds. The ornament, therefore, combines the palmette type characteristic of Beazley's earlier Class I and later Class III.

Red: a ring of each eye, the inscription.


Attributed to the Bowdoin-Eye Painter, his name piece [Beazley] ca. 520 - 500 B. C.

The eye-cup became a favorite form during this period. The eyes, though mainly decorative, may originally have had an apotropaic meaning.

Two athletes are pictured preparing for their events: the race in armor and the broad jump with weights.


Bibliography

Beazley 1918, 13, no. 2; Bloesch 1940, 36, no. 3; Richter 1958, 53; Herbert, The Walker Art Museum Bulletin 1 (1962) no. 4, p. 9; ARV2, 167, no. 5; Herbert 1964, 61, no. 160.

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