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From the frieze of an Attic tomb monument

Exekias-540

Altes Museum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

Altes Museum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

A group of eight women has assembled. They are wrapped in dark garments, against which their faces stand out, painted in white. The five women in front sit facing each other on folding stools and chairs, while the three at the back are standing. Among the women is a small figure: a child dressed as an adult. It has long hair and wears an artfully decorated costume. How small the child is becomes clear by comparison with the women's hands: this is a baby, which is being passed around among the grief-stricken women, before being lovingly wrapped up in a coat held ready by the woman standing at the back on the left. The dark-painted face, embodiment of the masculine, indicates that the child is a boy. This is indeed a sad occasion: the mother's death in childbirth has left the new-born child, probably the father's only son and heir, an orphan. This plaque (or pinax in Greek), on which the famous vase painter Exeldas has painted this scene, is one of a series of at least fifteen representing the laying-out, the mourning and the funeral procession of a young woman, which were probably mounted on her tomb.

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  • Title: From the frieze of an Attic tomb monument
  • Creator: Attributed to Exekias
  • Date Created: -540
  • Location: Attica
  • Physical Dimensions: w44 x h37,4 cm
  • Type: Funerary pinax
  • Medium: Clay
  • Inv.-No.: F 1813
  • ISIL-No.: DE-MUS-814319
  • External link: Altes Museum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
  • Copyrights: Text: © Scala Publishers / Antikensammlung, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin / Ursula Kästner || Photo: © b p k - || Photo Agency / Antikensammlung, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin / Johannes Laurentius
  • Collection: Antikensammlung, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz

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