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*Gitia/das), a Lacedaemonian architect, statuary, and poet. He completed the temple of Athena Poliouchos at Sparta, and ornamented it with works in bronze, from which it was called the Brazen House, and hence the goddess received the surname of Χαλκοῖκος. Gitiadas made for this temple the statue of the goddess and other works in bronze (most, if not all of which, seem to have been bas-reliefs on the walls), representing the labours of Heracles, the exploits of the Tyndarids, Hephaestus releasing his mother from her chains, the Nymphs arming Perseus for his expedition against Medusa, the Birth of Athena, and Amphitrite and Poseidon. The artist also served the goddess as a poet, for he composed a hymn to her, besides other poems, in the Doric dialect. (Paus. 3.17.3.)

Gitiadas also made two of the three bronze tripods at Amyclae. The third was the work of Callon, the Aeginetan. The two by Gitiadas were supported by statues of Aphrodite and Artemis (Paus. 3.18.5). This last passage has been misinterpreted in two different ways, namely, as if it placed the date of Gitiadas, on the one hand, as high as the first or second Messenian War, or, on the other hand, as low as the end of the Peloponnesian War. The true meaning of Pausanias has been explained by Müller (Aeginet. p. 100), and Thiersch (Epochen, p. 146, &c., Aumerk. p. 40, &c.; comp. Hirt, in the Amalthea, vol. i. p. 260). The passage may be thus translated :--" But, as to the things worth seeing at Amyclae, there is upon a pillar a pentathlete, by name Aenetus. * * Of him, then, there is an image and bronze tripods. (But as for the other more ancient tripods, they are said to be a tithe 1 from the war against the Messenians.) Under the first tripod stands an image of Aphrodite, but Artemis under the second: both the tripods themselves and what is wrought upon them are the work of Gitiadas: but the third is the work of the Aeginetan Callon: but under this stands an image of Cora, the daughter of Demeter. But Aristander, the Parian, and Polycleitus, the Argive, made [other tripods]; the former a woman holding a lyre, namely, Sparta; but Polycleitus made Aphrodite, surnamed, the Amyclaean.' But these last tripods exceed the others in size, and were dedicated from the spoils of the victory at Aegospotami." That is, there were at Amyclae three sets of tripods, first, those made from the spoils of the (first or second) Messenian War, which Pausanias only mentions parenthetically; then, those which, with the statue, formed the monument of the Olympic victor Aenetus, made by Gitiadas and Callon; and, lastly, those made by Aristander and Polycleitus out of the spoils of the battle of Aegospotami. But in another passage (4.14.2), Pausanias appears to say distinctly that the tripods at Amyclae, which were adorned with the images of Aphrodite, Artemis, and Cora, were dedicated by the Lacedaemonians at the end of the first Messenian War. There can, however, be little doubt that the words from Ἀφροδίτης to ἐνταῦθα, are the gloss (which afterwards crept into the text) of some commentator who misunderstood the former passage. Another argument that Gitiadas cannot be placed nearly so high as the first Messenian War is derived from the statement of Pausanias (3.17.6) that the Zeus of Learchus of Rhegium was the oldest work in bronze at Sparta.

These difficulties being removed, it is clear from the way in which Gitiadas is mentioned with Callon by Pausanias that he was his contemporary, and he therefore flourished about B. C. 516. [CALLON.] He is the last Spartan artist of any distinction.

His teacher is unknown; but, as he flourished in the next generation but one after Dipoenus and Scyllis, he may have learnt his art from one of their pupils; perhaps from Theodorus of Samos, who lived a considerable time at Sparta. (Hirt. Gesch. d. Bild. Kennt. p. 108.)


1 * According to the reading of Jacobs and Bekker, δεκάτην for δέκα.

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516 BC (1)
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