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Bell Krater (Mixing Bowl)

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.

Date:

about 450 BCE

Artist:

Manner of the Niobid Painter
Greek; Athens

About this artwork

This type of krater, or bowl for mixing wine and water, takes its name from the resemblance of its shape to an inverted bell. In the center stands a warrior, whose long spear breaks the picture plane into two parts. Since he hands his helmet, decorated with a leaping dolphin, to a woman wearing a diadem, or crown, who stands before him, he may be returning from battle. Behind him, another woman extends her hand as if to take his shield, which bears the image of a lion, its tongue extended.

This scene is believed to depict Achilles, the great Greek warrior of the Trojan War, at home with his mother, Thetis, her father, and Nereus, and a Nereid, or sea nymph. His helmet pushed back, Achilles is seated before a column, holding a spear in one hand and a libation, or offering, bowl in the other. Before him, Thetis holds an oinochoe, or pitcher, from which she has filled or is about to fill his bowl, while also supporting her son’s shield. Nereus looks on from the right, and a Nereid, a long fillet in her hand, stands behind him. His greaves, or shin protectors, are stored on a shelf in the background.

Status

On View, Gallery 151

Department

Arts of the Ancient Mediterranean and Byzantium

Culture

Ancient Greek

Title

Bell Krater (Mixing Bowl)

Origin

Athens

Date

450 BCE

Medium

terracotta, decorated in the red-figure technique

Dimensions

H. 38.4 cm (15 1/8 in.); diam. 41.2 cm (16 1/4 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Martin A. Ryerson

Reference Number

1922.2197

IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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https://api.artic.edu/api/v1/artworks/84551/manifest.json

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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