III. Heroes and Monsters: Age of Colonization

III-1 Centaur and Zeus or Herakles

Small perfume flask. The provenience of this flask is not known, but many of these objects came from the graves of men who had gone to found Greek colonies in Sicily and southern Italy.

III-2 Chimaera and Bellerophon

Painting on small perfume jar (aryballos) made in Corinth around 650 B.C. and now in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Red and dark brown paint on a cream ground.

III-3 Perseus, Athena, Gorgons (Eleusis Amphora)

This is a large jar (amphora) in Archaeological Museum, Eleusis. White and dark brown paint on cream clay surface. Total height of vase, 4 ft. 9. in (1.44 m). Made in Athens around 670 B.C.

This vase, which is much larger than vases of similar shape that would be used in households, was found in a cemetary in Eleusis (on the gulf near Athens). It contained the bones of a child.

One mythological scene appears on the front of the neck of the vase. A second myth runs around the whole of the body. On the shoulder are two animals.

III-4 Odysseus blinds Cyclops (Eleusis Amphora)

Painting on neck of the same vase that shows Perseus, Athena and Gorgons. Information about the object is on III-3 (whole). This scene shows three men who hold a long weapon over their head driving it into the forehead of a fourth figure who is much larger than they are. He sits, holding a wine up in one had and using the other to try to stop the weapon. One of the three men is shown in outline drawing filled in by white paint.

III-5 Nessos Painter amphora, ca. 600 BC

Herakles and Nessos on neck, Perseus and gorgons on body.

III-6 Amphora with reliefs from Mykonos

Large jar (pithos) in museum on the island of Mykonos. Made in the Cyclades islands, and used on Mykonos in connection with a burial (exact arrangment not known because of conditions of discovery). Decorated with one large picture on the neck and a series of small ones in two rows on the body of the vase. Height 4 ft. 5 ins. (1.35 m).

Man with drawn sword advances toward richly dressed woman who lifts her veil. identified as Menelaus and Helen.

Gorgon Medusa, Corfu Museum. Originally on gable end (pediment) of Temple of Artemis at Corfu, c. 580 B.C. Height of gorgon, about 9 feet 4 in. (2.85 m). Condition: badly broken, parts lost, filled in with white plaster and outline drawing suggesting the original appearance. Medusa's children, the horse Pegasus and the man Chrysaor, are beside her, possibly being born from her sides.

III-7 Medusa from the Temple at Corfu

Reconstruction of temple of Artemis at Corfu (an island in the Ionian Sea, on the West side of the mainland of Greece). Gorgon Medusa was in center of gable end (pediment).

Persons and Events of interest:

  • Athena

  • Bellerophon

  • Chimaera

  • Cyclops

  • Gorgon

  • Helen

  • Herakles

  • Medusa

  • Trojan War

Objects and Places:

  • Pottery as grave goods

  • Pottery as grave markers

  • Pottery without findspots

  • Temple decoration

Texts and Authors:



Lost Epic