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Hydria (Water Jar)

A work made of terracotta, decorated in the red-figure technique.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of terracotta, decorated in the red-figure technique.


360-350 BCE


Attributed to the Iliupersis Painter
Greek; Apulia, Italy

About this artwork

In ancient Greece it was considered uncivilized to consume undiluted wine, so water was fetched from a public fountain house in a large handled jar like this one and used to dilute large quantities of wine. The horizontal handles made it easier to carry, while the vertical handle at the back was used for pouring. On the front of the vessel, six female figures are arranged around a funeral momument, topped by a tall white pillar. Some of the women are standing while others are seated, and hold objects like fans or caskets for precious objects. Below the handles on the sides of the vessel, the painter has added two owls.

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Arts of the Ancient Mediterranean and Byzantium


Iliupersis Painter


Hydria (Water Jar)




360 BCE–350 BCE


terracotta, decorated in the red-figure technique


53 × 41.2 × 34.2 cm (20 7/8 × 16 1/4 × 13 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Katherine K. Adler Memorial Fund

Reference Number


Extended information about this artwork

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