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    Sale 5399

    Antiquities

    30 April 2008, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 109

    AN ATTIC 'PLASTIC' TERRACOTTA LEKYTHOS IN THE FORM OF A CROUCHING WOMAN

    MID 4TH CENTURY B.C.

    Price Realised  

    AN ATTIC 'PLASTIC' TERRACOTTA LEKYTHOS IN THE FORM OF A CROUCHING WOMAN
    MID 4TH CENTURY B.C.
    The body of the vessel moulded in the form of a woman playing knucklebones, her back unmoulded and with black glaze, with aperture on her upper back from which rose the vessel's neck, mouth and handle (now missing), the partially draped female figure carefully modelled, wearing fillet in her centrally parted hair which is tied in a high 'knot', earrings, and bracelet on her upper right arm, she crouches with right hand resting on the ground, on black-glazed circular base
    4 in. (10.2 cm.) high


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    This extremely rare vase is unusual in being moulded almost entirely in the round. 'Plastic' vases, a new category of sculptural vases, began to appear in Athens at the beginning of the 4th Century B.C.; they were characterised by having a moulded sculptural front, a wide opening and a flat reverse which was generally black-glazed, sometimes with red-figure ornament. This piece depicts a woman crouching on one knee to play the popular game of astragala (knucklebones), a sculptural type first seen around 360 B.C. which became particularly popular in the Hellenistic period, since it gave the opportunity to show the female form in an interesting and unusual pose. For a terracotta statuette of the type, cf. R. A. Higgins, Greek Terracottas, London, 1967, p. 103, pl. 44A.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.
    Please note that the lots of Iranian origin are subject to U.S. trade restrictions which currently prohibit the import into the United States. Similar restrictions may apply in other countries.
    This lot will be removed to an off-site warehouse at the close of business on the day of sale - 2 weeks free storage


    Provenance

    Property from the Collection of the Princely House of Liechtenstein; acquired by Prince Johann II (1858-1929) in the late 19th/early 20th Century.