Red-figured Lekythos (Primary Title)

attributed to, Bowdoin Painter (Artist)

490–480 BC
Greek (Attic)
12 1/4 x 4 (diameter) in. (31.1 x 10.2 (diameter) cm. cm)

Satyrs like the one depicted here were half-horse, half-human followers of Dionysos, the god of wine. This satyr carries a rhyton (drinking horn) and an askos—an animal skin full of wine—on one shoulder. Behind him are ivy vines, a plant sacred to Dionysos. The apparently random letters on the wineskin are known as a “nonsense inscription.”

The following Greek letters appear on the wineskin: ΝΟΣΦΓΕΚ (as published by S. Lanz, "Eine Satyrdarstellung aus dem Umkreis des Bowdoin-Malers," Antike Kunst 1973, pp. 57-9 [PJS 23 Aug 2018])
Arthur and Margaret Glasgow Fund
“The Horse in Ancient Greek Art,” National Sporting Library and Museum, Middleburg, VA, September 7, 2017 – January 14, 2018; VMFA, February 17 – July 8, 2018
December 1982 (Galerie Günter Puhze, Freiburg); purchased by Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA), Richmond; accessioned into VMFA collection December 8, 1982. [1]

[1] Information in VMFA Curatorial and Registration records.
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

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