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155. 95.28 CUP from Vulci PLATE LXXXIX

Diameter 0.328. The foot is alien. First heard of in the possession of the Roman dealer Basseggio, who sold it to Schlosser in the winter 1835-6. Later in the Bernus collection at Stift Neuburg near Heidelberg; later still, in the collection of Adolphe van Branteghem (no. 72). Mon. 2 pl. 48, with Annali 1837 pp. 209-l8 (Emil Braun), whence (one figure) Benndorf Gjölbaschi p. 144; WV. C pl. 2; Burl. 1888 pll. 7-8 = Fröhner Brant. pll. 21-22 and Hartwig pl. 39, 2 and pl. 40, whence Hoppin ii p. 47, (I and B) Perrot 10 pp. 492-3, (A-B) Jb. 32 Beil. p. 137, (A-B) Pfuhl fig. 449, (A-B) Deubner Attische Feste pl. 24, (A-B) Arch. class. 4 pl. 33 (Becatti); I, Pfuhl fig. 449, whence Arch. class. 4 pl. 36, I; A-B, ibid. pll. 34-35; I, Fairbanks and Chase p. 34; B and part of A, Bielefeld ZV. pl. 11. All these publications include restorations, and do not include the new fragments, for which see below. I, Eos pursuing Tithonos. A-B, unexplained. About 470-460 B.C., by the Telephos Painter (VA. p. 108 no. 1; Att. V. p. 225 no. 1; ARV.1 p. 542 no. 1; ARV.2 pp. 816-17 no. 1).

The cup, of Type B, bears the signature of Hieron as potter, incised on one handle, ΗΙΕΡΟΝΕΠΟΙΕΣΕΝ. (It is placed on the wrong handle in the drawing published by Hartwig.) Pollak saw that the pictures were by the same hand as those on the Telephos cup, no. 154.

In 1933 I added a fragment in Florence and four (making up into three) in Villa Giulia (CF. pl. 11 B 44 and pl. Y, 5-8, with pp. 18-19); Miss Chapman has incorporated them in her drawings.

Inside, Eos, alighting, seizes a boy, who looks round in surprise. She wears a chiton, with kolpos, a small wrap shawl-wise over her shoulders, a spotted saccos, and ear-rings; the boy has a himation over his shoulders. His long hair is tucked up behind into a headband or thin stephane, with a pair of locks escaping one on each side of the ear. Relief contours. Brown for the minor details of the wings and of the boy's body, also for the pair of stripes on the skirt. The lower edge of the skirt is bordered with brown, like the edge of Achilles' himation on the Telephos cup (no. 154). The forehead-hair of the goddess is in dark brown dots on a lighter ground. Red for her girdle and the inscription ΚΑΛΟΣ. The maeander is of the same type as in the Telephos cup (no. 154); the saltire-squares are different, but recur in other cups by the Telephos Painter.1

The goddess is Eos; and the boy is surely Tithonos. There are cases where one might hesitate between Tithonos and Kephalos (see ii pp. 37-38; Boston 03.816), but this is not among them: physique, attitude, and costume, speak for Tithonos.

Outside, the picture runs right round the cup. A strange, excited procession of ten persons is headed by a man in armour who sets one foot on a perpendicular mountain or rock and looks up. His left leg is shown frontal. He wears a chitoniskos (with kolpos), a wrap over his shoulders, an Attic helmet, greaves, and sword; holds a spear, upright, in his right hand, and on his left arm a shield. The device on his shield is a prancing horse — lean, like the human figures — , of which only the forepart is shown. The movable cheek-piece of the helmet is ornamented with a snake, the scabbard with roundels or bosses. He is followed by (2) an old man, (3) a man, (4) a youth, (5) a man, (6) a youth or man — the upper part is missing — , (7) an elderly man, (8) a youth, (9) an aged man, doubtless a servant, (10) a man. All wear himatia; (2) the old man, and (7) the elderly, a long chiton as well. All carry sticks, except the youth (8). (2), (5), and (7) have thin head-fillets of the simplest sort, done in red; 3, a broader fillet, reserved; 4 and 10, broad fillets — tainiai; and the youth (8) a stephane with leaves rising from it in front. The aged man who with difficulty follows him has no head-fillet. Over his shoulder he carries a large string-bag containing round things — fruit? or vegetables? — , and besides the bag, a strigil and a flat-bottomed aryballos. He would seem to be the servant of the youth no. 8, and the elderly man no. 7, who looks back at the youth, may be the father. His scanty hair appears to be tied on the forehead in a fashion which we have already encountered (iii p. 34; Boston 13.186). He shows no wrinkles, and is evidently younger than no. 2.

Three of these persons look up, like the armed leader, and two of them — the old man no. 2, and the youth no. 8 — open their mouths.

The procession passes a lighted altar, under one handle; and between the last two figures a tree is seen. The altar is of the same type as in the Telephos cup (no. 154).

Relief-contours. Brown for the minor details of the bodies and for the netting. A brown streak indicates the rotundity of the shield, and there is much brown on rock and tree. The chiton of 7, the himatia of 2, 7, and 5, have the same brown edging as the chiton of Eos. Red for the thin fillets, for the baldrick, the flame, the daubs on the altar, and the cords of the aryballos.

The new fragments improve the lower parts of Eos, and of 1, 5, 6 outside; also the altar and the rock. There are still pieces wanting. A very small fragment in Villa Giulia, with fingers holding the top of a stick, seemed to be by the Telephos Painter and may be the missing part of 7: but my notes are insufficient.

This is the point at which a convincing interpretation of the picture should follow, but all we can produce is a brief account of the explanations hitherto suggested.

Emil Braun in 1837 (Annali 1837 pp. 209-18): — Oedipus setting out to cope with the Sphinx; and the terrified population of Thebes.

Dümmler in 1899 (Bonner Studien p. 89): 'chorus of Thebans congratulating Oedipus on his victory over the Sphinx'.

Van Branteghem in 1888 (Fröhner Burl. 1888 p. 3): 'the family of Tithonos, who are present at his abduction and look towards the sky with gestures of fear and surprise. At the time when the young shepherd is carried off by Eos, a sacrifice is being celebrated.' (It had already occurred to Braun that the outside picture might be connected with the inside — 'companions of Kephalos' — but he had rejected the thought.)

Hartwig in 1893 (Meisterschalen pp. 436-7): the altar merely denotes the neighbourhood of a sanctuary; a number of ordinary Athenians who happen to be at the foot of a mountain witness the abduction of Kephalos above.

Petersen in 1917 (Jb. 32 pp. 137-45): celebration of the festival, commemorating the capture of Salamis by the Athenians from the Megarians, which is described by Plutarch (Plut. Sol. 9), who states that on this occasion an armed man landed from a ship and ran to Mount Skiradion; the altar of Enyalios set up by Solon. (This explanation has the merit of explaining the man in armour, but as expounded by Petersen it is rather complicated.)

Bicknell in 1921 (JHS. 41 pp. 229-30): hunting-companions of Kephalos; the string-bag a hunting-net.

Pfuhl in 1923 (MZ. p. 475): against Petersen.

Deubner in 1932 (Attische Feste p. 219): for Petersen.

Becatti in 1952 (Arch. class. 4 pp. 162-73): the descendants of Kephalos return to Athens, as Pausanias relates (Paus. 1.37.6-7), in the tenth generation after the banishment of their ancestor; arriving at Mount Poikilon, they sight the serpent which is a sign that they have reached the spot where Apollo at Delphi had instructed them to sacrifice; the armed leader is Chalkinos; the boy on B, Daitos.

The most obvious explanation is a search party: if it is oddly composed, — the artist is an odd character. But the true explanation may be still to find.

Klein 1887, p. 170, no. 16; G. M. A. Richter, AJA 21 (1917), p. 1, note 4; C. T. Seltman, 1924, Athens: Its History and Coinage before the Persian Invasion, Cambridge [Eng.], The University Press, p. 31, fig. 23; L. D. Caskey, AJA 39 (1935), p. 419; Roton 1951, pp. 183 (illus.), 207 (illus.), 257 (illus.); EAA, II, p. 533 (L. Rocchetti); Palmer 1962, pp. 44-45, fig. 31; E. Bielefeld, AA 1962, col. 82; ARV2, pp. 482 (no. 32), 816-817 (no. 1); L. O. K. Congdon, AJA 67 (1963), p. 12; Metzger 1965, p. 117; E. Kluwe, Die Griechische Vase (Wissenschaftliche Zeitschrift der Universität Rostock 16, 1967), pp. 469 (note 6), 759 (pl. 129, 3); V. Zinserling, ibid., p. 573; Schettino Nobile 1969, pp. 6-7, 11 (note 21), 16 (note 33), 17 (note 35), 20 (note 46), 21-22 (no. 20), 29, 35 (note 77), 60-61, 63, 69, 78-79, pls. 25-26 (figs. 41-43), 27 (fig. 44); Chapman Tribute, 3 illus.; Para., p. 420, no. 1; C. Rolley, RA 1972, p. 152; M. Robertson 1975, pp. 245, 659 (note 154); Boardman 1975, pp. 195-196, 206 (fig. 379, 1-2), 230, 248; E. B. Dusenbery, Hesperia 47 (1978), pp. 214 (note 6), 236 (note 88); Dover 1978, pp. 93, 220, no. R801; Kaempf-Dimitriadou 1979, p. 90, no. 179; Vermeule 1979, pp. 164-165 (fig. 16), 247 (note 26); Brommer 1979a, p. 124 (ref. to Monumenti II, 48); Brommer 1980, p. 27, no. B 2; W. Koenigs, IstMitt 30 (1980), p. 88, note 58; Fischer-Graf 1980, p. 86, note 834; Schefold 1981, pp. 313-314 (figs. 452-454), 333, 375; Kurtz & Sparkes 1982, p. 45 (D. von Bothmer); Beazley Addenda 1, pp. 121, 143; Immerwahr 1984, p. 343, note 14; Wehgartner 1985, p. 42, note 113; LIMC, III, 1, p. 186, no. 1, III, 2, pl. 149, illus. (B. M. Giannattasio Alloero); LIMC, III, 1, pp. 769 (no. 201), 775-777, III, 2, pl. 575, illus. (C. Weiss); Schmidt 1988, p. 351, note 6 (N. Yalouris); CVA, Amsterdam, Allard Pierson Museum, 1, p. 66, under no. 2205 (J. M. Hemelrijk); O. Deubner, JdI 103 (1988), p. 131, note 15; Beazley Addenda 2, pp. 247, 292.

1 Louvre G 385-6: VA. p. 108; Pottier pl. 40: ARV.1 p. 542 no. 6; ARV.2 p. 817 no. 4. Florence PD 54: NSc. 1926 pp. 368-9: ARV.1 p. 543 no. 23; ARV.2 p. 819 no. 36.

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  • Cross-references from this page (2):
    • Pausanias, Description of Greece, 1.37
    • Plutarch, Solon, 9
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