Red-Figure Neck-Amphora (Storage Vessel) (Primary Title)

attributed to, Danaid Painter, Greek, South Italian (Campanian) (Artist)

ca. 330 BC, 4th century BC
Greek, South Italian (Campanian)
glazed terracotta
South Italy
Overall: 22 × 9 in. (55.88 × 22.86 cm)
Overall (at base): 4 3/4 in. (12.07 cm)

“Hear now, father, the sorrows that have made me weep. Your two children chant the lamentation at your grave. The tomb welcomes suppliant and exile alike.” Aeschylus, The Libation Bearers

The painter of this vase has managed to refer to all three plays of The Oresteia by Aeschylus (ca.525-465 BC) in a single image. Aeschylus’s dramatic cycle chronicles the murder of Agamemnon by his wife, Klytemnestra (The Agamemnon); the return to Argos by their son, Orestes, to avenge his father’s murder (The Libation Bearers); and the pursuit of Orestes by the Furies, who seek to punish him for murdering his mother (The Eumenides). The cycle concludes with the creation of law courts, thereby establishing the rule of law over the desire for vengeance.

Adolph D. and Wilkins C. Williams Fund
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

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