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Thales

Θαλῆς) of Sicyon, a painter.

He is mentioned with the epithet μεγαλοφυής by Diogenes Laertius (1.38), on the authority of Demetrius Magnes. In the same passage, Diogenes speaks of another Thales, as mentioned in the work of Duris on painting; and it may be presumed, therefore, that this Thales was a painter ; but whether the two were different persons, or the same person differently mentioned by Demetrius and by Duris, cannot be determined.

A curious passage respecting an artist of this name has been discovered by Osann, in an oration of Theodorus Hyrtacenus, published in Boissonade's Anecdota Graeca, vol. i. p. 156 : --Ἕλληνες Φειδίαν Θαλῆν τε καὶ Ἀπελλῆν, τὸν μὲν λιθοξοϊκῆς, τὸν δ᾽ αὖ πλαστικῆς, Ἀπελλῆν δὲ γραφικῆς ἕνεκα καὶ τῶν ἐκεῖθεν χαρίτων ἐθαύμαζον. It is certainly remarkable to find a statuary, otherwise unknown (or, if he be the same person as the painter, little better than unknown), placed by a late Byzantine writer on a level with Pheidias and Apelles. There is probably some error; but whether it rests with the author or the transcriber, and what is its correction, we have not the means of deciding. Perhaps Osann may have discussed the question, but we have no opportunity of referring to his paper in the Kunstblatt, which we mention on the authority of Raoul-Rochette, who only observes that " the difficulty is not serious, as there were many artists who practised at the same time statuary and painting," as if that were the difficulty !


Further Information

Osann, Kunstblatt, 1832, No. 74; Rochette, Lettre à M. Schorn, p. 415, 2d ed.

[P.S]

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