1. 01.8025 PLATE Herakles and Kerberos PLATE I and FIGURE 1Diameter, 0.189 m. Broken, and a few pieces missing. The only noteworthy restoration of the picture is that of the left elbow of Herakles. The vase has been cleaned since its first publication; some details in Hauser's drawing (the projecting brim of Hermes' cap and the hair over his forehead, the end of the bow seen against the arm of Herakles) probably reproduce restorations which are now removed. A fracture running obliquely downwards past the profile of Hermes has been repaired in antiquity with three clamps, the holes for which remain. It has damaged the profile hardly at all. The shape of the plate and the decoration of its lower surface with rings of black glaze are shown in figure 1. The base-ring is pierced to hold a cord for suspension. Relief contours practically throughout; exceptions: the paws of Kerberos, parts of the feet of Herakles and Hermes, the ends of the fingers of Hermes' right hand, some of the contours of the fingers of his left hand, the lower edge of Herakles' chiton. The hair contours reserved. Raised dots along the edges of the hair above the foreheads. The interstices between the locks on the back of the neck of Kerberos indented with a bluntly pointed tool. No anatomical markings in brown; details of the ears of Kerberos and lines on his noses in thinned black, turning to brown. Red used for the chain of Kerberos, for his tongue, and for the claws of the hind-paws of the lion-skin. Formerly in the Bourguignon collection, and probably identical with a plate from Chiusi mentioned in Bull. d. Inst. 1851, p. 171: 'tra cinque piatti sono notabili pel soggetto, uno che mostra Ercole con Cerbero...' (Hartwig). Ann. Rep. 1901, p. 33, no. 7. Hartwig, Jahrbuch, viii, 1893, p. 159, with a drawing by Hauser. Fairbanks, Greek Gods and Heroes, p. 60. Beazley, V.A., p. 14. Hoppin, i, p. 144, no. 1. Pfuhl, i. 433, III, fig. 356. Beazley, Att. V., p. 30, no. 6. 'The lively group of three figures is composed within a reserved circle upon a ground line placed so high that it cuts off nearly a third of the circumference. In the exergue, a vertical palmette between lotus flowers growing from the spirals at its base. Herakles, moving to right in a long stride, his head turned back, his advanced left leg sharply bent, his right leg almost extended behind him, exerts his strength to pull Kerberos along by a chain which he grasps with his right hand, while in his left he holds his bow above his head. The monster's reluctance is expressed by the position of his front legs. His hindquarters are out of the picture, suggesting, as Hartwig has remarked, that he is just emerging from the house of Hades. In the background between Herakles and Kerberos, Hermes advances more nimbly, his kerykeion in his right hand, his left lifted in a gesture of excitement. Herakles is beardless.1 He wears a short chiton, and over it a lion-skin tied about his neck and fitting snugly about his waist, where it is confined by a girdle. The tail is tucked under the girdle. His quiver hangs at his back. Hermes, bearded and with long hair, wears a pointed felt cap with brim turned up, a chiton, and a small mantle hung over his arms. The hilt of his sword appears at his side. Kerberos is represented with two heads, as regularly in Attic vase painting, and a shaggy neck. This vase and the succeeding one, no. 2 (Boston 03.785), belong to a series of seven plates assigned by Beazley to one artist, whom he has appropriately named the Kerberos painter. In Att. V., l.c., he adds to the list of his works two vases of different shapes in Athens, and, tentatively, the famous Miltiades plate at Oxford, Corpus, Oxford, I, Pl. 1, no. 5. Four of the plates depict mythological scenes in a lively and interesting style. The one formerly in the Blaydes collection, with Io, Hermes, and Argos, had already been connected with the Kerberos plate by Hartwig; and the drawing of it in A.Z. 1847, Pl. 2, leaves no doubt as to the correctness of the attribution. One of the two plates at Yale, Baur, Stoddard Collection, no. 169, Pl. 15, also contains three figures (Athena, Kassandra, Aias). The plate in the Louvre, (Louvre G 67), Pottier, Album, Pl. 96 (better: photo Giraudon), shows Theseus killing the Minotaur. The style of the Kerberos painter is still strongly under the influence of black-figured vase painting. It is not difficult to imagine the scene on our plate exactly duplicated in black figure, just as one and the same scene is treated in the two styles on some of the amphorae of Andokides. The diminutive figure of Kassandra on the plate at Yale also recalls black-figured pictures, as Pfuhl has noted. In early archaic representations of the rape she is apt to be very small, perhaps because the artists wished to emphasize the atrocity of the deed by making her very young. And Hartwig calls attention to the rendering of details in the Kerberos plate: 'The fine dots on the lion-skin of Herakles, on the sword-hilt of Hermes and on the head of Kerberos, the handling of the edges of garments and of the separate locks of the mane of the two-headed dog equal in their subtlety the engraving on black-figured vases.' The relief lines, where they appear against the red ground, show the artist's mastery of the medium. But in rendering the contours he is less careful. Relying on the fact that they will be hidden, he sometimes makes the lines thick, or draws double lines, or, in a few places, omits them. In this respect he does not reach the standard of Epiktetos in the pictures of silens (no. 5 [Boston 95.34] and 6 [Boston 10.212]) or of the painter of the archer (no. 8; Boston 00.336). In these three works all the contours are drawn in clean strokes as if they were to be visible. The Kerberos painter in most cases uses the reserved hair contour. But Xenophon and Dorotheos on the plate no. 2 (Boston 03.785) have their hair contours incised. And the interstices between the locks of their fringes are incised, or indented like those of the mane of Kerberos. Their names also are incised. Incised details occur also in the Miltiades plate: the bowstring, the reins where they appear against the black ground, and the outlines of the horse's tail. Beazley is inclined to think that we have a black-figured work by the Kerberos painter: fragments of a white-ground plaque in Athens, Athens, Acr. 2584, Graef-Langlotz, Akropolisvasen, Pl. 109, and he adds, as probably by him, fragments, some in Florence, some in the Villa Giulia, of a cup with Herakles and Geryon.2
C. Roebuck, AJA 43 (1939), pp. 467, 471-472; ARV, p. 55, no. 6 (Cerberus Painter); Chase 1950, p. 61, fig. 68; Brommer 1956, p. 54, no. B2; G. M. A. Hanfmann, AJA 61 (1957), p. 74, pl. 28, fig. 7; EAA, II, pp. 507-508, fig. 701 (G. Sgatti); Brommer 1960, p. 74, no. B2; A. Greifenhagen, JBerlMus 3 (1961), pp. 129-130, fig. 17; Palmer 1962, pp. 76 (fig. 63), 78; Chase & Vermeule 1963, pp. 89, 95, 100, fig. 81; ARV2, pp. 163, no. 6 (Paseas [the Cerberus Painter]), 1630; MFA, Illustrated Handbook, 1964, pp. 54-55, illus.; Zanker 1965, p. 9; A. H. Ashmead, Hesperia 35 (1966), p. 22, note 9; Whitehill 1970, p. 165, illus.; Buitron 1972, p. 71; Brommer 1973, p. 96, no. B 8; Henle 1973, p. 172, note 8; Callipolitis-Feytmans 1974, pp. 145, 214 (as 01.8085), 215 (note 15), 228 (note 54); Kurtz 1975, p. 10; J. Boardman, JHS 95 (1975), p. 8, pl. Ic; Boardman 1975, p. 18, fig. 16; MFA, Illustrated Handbook, 1976, pp. 86-87, illus.; T. Seki, AA 1981, p. 49, note 8; Beazley Addenda 1, p. 90 (Paseas); W. J. Raschke, 1988, in The Archaeology of the Olympics: the Olympics and Other Festivals in Antiquity, Wendy J. Raschke, ed., Madison, WI, University of Wisconsin Press, pp. 44, 51, note 35; Beazley Addenda 2, p. 182; LIMC, V, 1, pp. 89 (no. 2583), 97 (V. Smallwood); LIMC, V, 1, p. 329, no. 521, V, 2, pl. 244, illus. (G. Siebert).