) is a
generic term for any water-jar or water-pot, but specifically applied to a
form of vessel more or less nearly resembling the AMPHORA
The hydria, however, had a rounder body and
a shorter neck than the amphora. Another distinctive mark is its having
three handles ; a pair of small ones (ὦτα
) at the shoulders, and a large
vertical one either at the neck or in the middle of the side. Hence it is
called by the Italians vaso a tre maniche.
regarded by some German writers as identical with the hydria (Guhl and Koner
; Blümner); according to Dennis, “The name hydria is applied
to those of the earliest style which have a squareness about the
shoulders, while a later and more elegant variety, with the shoulders
rounded off, is generally called calpis:” it is admitted,
however, that this distinction is conventional. Compare Birch, p. 364.
Both forms occur frequently in vase-paintings, in which girls are represented
carrying water on their heads, aided by a pad (τύλη,
) resembling a
porter's knot (see cut under ARCULUM; a
scene of water-drawing in Birch, p. 195). The large third handle made it
easier to dip into the water and lift to the top of the head; the two small
ones helped to balance it when carried. The hydria as the older form is
found mostly on vases with black figures, the calpis with red figures,
though the latter sometimes shows archaic designs. For other points of
difference, see CALPIS
The material was in general pottery, but a costly bronze ὑδρία
is mentioned ([Dem.] c. Everg. et
p. 1155.52). For the use of the water-jug (in this case
) in Athenian weddings, see MATRIMONIUM
Vol. II., p. 136
The hydria was employed as a cinerary
urn (Plut. Phil. 21
; Lucian, Demosth.
12.74); and as the urn from which the dicasts were
drawn by lot (Isocr. Trapez.
§ 33). In Plutarch
11) it is apparently the Roman voting-urn,
properly called cista [CISTA
golden or gold-mounted κάλπις
was used for
unguents (Antiphan. fr.
106 M.; Plb. 31.3.17
); this, of course, must have been
much smaller than the ordinary size. Vases of all shapes are found “in
miniature” in Etruscan tombs, and must have served a similar
purpose. (Guhl and Koner, ed. 5, p. 191; Hermann-Blümner,
p. 163; Birch, Anc.
ed. 1873, p. 364; and especially Dennis, Etruria,
ed. 1878, pp. cx., cxi.)