• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 2056

    ANTIQUITIES

    9 December 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 87

    AN ATTIC RED-FIGURED COLUMN-KRATER

    CIRCA 450 B.C.

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    AN ATTIC RED-FIGURED COLUMN-KRATER
    CIRCA 450 B.C.
    The obverse with Eos and Kephalos, the goddess of the dawn running to the right, her wings raised, wearing a voluminous chiton, her hair bound in a fillet, her arms stretched forward towards the young hunter, fleeing to the right but looking back at his pursuer, clad in boots, a short chiton and a chlamys, his petasos over his shoulders, holding two spears in his right hand, his companion fleeing to the left but looking back, nude but for a chlamys over his shoulders and left arm, with boots and a petasos, holding two spears; framed on either side by double rows of ivy, tongues above, lotus bud chain on the neck, ivy on the rim; the reverse with two draped youths and an older man, framed on either side by double rows of dots, tongues above, dots on the rim; with rays above the foot, lotus bud chain on the upper surface of the rim, and palmettes on the handle-plates
    14¼ in. (36.1 cm.) high


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    For a red-figured bell-krater by the Christie Painter with the same subject, see no. 131 in Reeder, et al., Pandora, Women in Classical Greece. According to Benson (p. 398 in Reeder, op. cit.) "Eos, goddess of the dawn, was notorious among the Greek goddesses for her unabashedly self-satisfying sexuality. She took a variety of mortal lovers, including Kephalos, Tithonos, Orion, and Kleitos, snatching them from the midst of their manly pursuits to become her consorts in the land of the immortals. The goddess fell in love with Kephalos of Athens when she saw him hunting one morning on the slopes of Mount Hymettos. Kephalos was the son of Hermes and Herse, one of the daughters of Kekrops, and as such was an important figure to the Athenians; he was thought to be the founder of the tribe known as the Kephalidae and the eponym of the Attic deme Kephale. Eos pursued and abducted him, and they had a son, Phaethon, who in turn was abducted by Aphrodite, and became the guardian of her shrine. In late traditions, Kephalos was a personification of daybreak, or the morning star that vanished with the dawn."

    Provenance

    English Private Collection, circa 1980.