« PreviousContinue »
nassos. Aphroditè is rising from the sea, seated in a large shell, supported by two Tritons. She holds a mirror in one hand, and wrings a tress of hair with the other.
Along the window-side of the room are miscellaneous GraecoRoman sculptures and mosaics. Among the latter is (54*) a mosaic, from the corridor of the Roman villa at Halicarnassos, with a bas wreath, containing words of good omen-Health! Long life! Joy! Peace! Cheerfulness! Hope!'.
In the middle of the room are various altars, fountains, vases, etc. See also four disks, with Bacchic subjects in low relief. These disks were mounted on central pivots, and served as revolving shutters for ventilators (fig. 46).
ETRUSCAN SCULPTURES, ETC.
1st bay. A reconstruction of the tomb known as the 'Grotta Dipinta,' at Bomarzo, with facsimiles of the wall paintings, which consist of figures of Hippocamps, etc., and a highly conventionalized frieze of waves and dolphins. The sarcophagus (55*) is that which was found in the tomb. The cover is in the form of a roof, at each end of which sits a Sphinx ; on the ridge tile is a serpent coiled in a knot. The pediments and the ends of the joint tiles on the roof are ornamented with masks of Medusa. On the front and back of the sarcophagus are reliefs representing Etruscan deities. At one end of the sarcophagus are a Gryphon and lion devouring a stay, and below this two lions devouring a bull.
2nd bay. The four large sarcophagi were found together in a tomb at Toscanella.
56* Sarcophagus. On the lid a recumbent male figure holding a bowl; on the front, two marine monsters in relief.
57*. Sarcophagus. On the cover is a male figure reclining. On the front is a relief representing a winged male figure leading a chariot, attended by three lictors with fasces (the executioner's axe and rods) and a trumpeter ; above this is an Etruscan inscription.
58*. Sarcophagus. On the cover a recumbent figure with a two-handled cup; on the front is a relief representing Scylla overpowering two male figures.
59*. Cover of a sarcophagus. Draped female figure reclining. Underneath are reliefs representing a bearded head with Phrygian cap, and on each side a boy riding on a sea monster.
Above, on each side of the bay, is a small series of Etruscan sepulchral chests.
3rd bay. 60*. Sepulchral urn, in the form of a seated male figure, divided into two parts at the waist.
61.* Sarcophagus from the Tomb of the Chariots, Corneto (Tarquinii). On the front and back are scenes in relief from the Taking of Troy (Iliupersis). At one end is a scene which appears to represent the quarrel of Achilles and Agamemnon; above this
is an Etruscan inscription, much injured. At the other end the relief seems to represent Neoptolemos slaying Polyxena.
62*. Placed upon this sarcophagus, but independent of it, is a cover of a sarcophagus, from the Grotta del Triclinio at Corneto. Female figure holding a Bacchic staff and a two-handled cup ; at her side a deer.
63*. Sarcophagus with the death of Eteocles and Polyneikes before Thebes. A thunderbolt sent by Zeus marks the end of the combat.
4th bay. Sepulchral urns, including two (64*, 65*) with the subject of the death of Hippolytos; his horses are terrified by the bull sent by Poseidon.
66*. On the front Achilles slaying Troïlos.
67*. On the front Orestes and Pylades slaying Clytaemnestra and Aegisthos, her paramour.
This bay also contains (68*) a wheel for raising water. It was found in the Roman workings of the Rio Tinto copper mine, and is an exceptional piece of ancient carpenter's work.
5th bay. Copy of a painted tomb, with a central sculptured column, found at Vulci. The two crouching lions, now placed · inside the entrance, originally flanked the tomb on the outside.
TA doorway on the south side of the room leads to the Gallery of Casts.]
THE GALLERY OF CASTS.
SUBJECT :- SELECT CASTS OF ANTIQUE SCULPTURE.
The casts from sculpture here shown are designed to serve as a supplement to the series of original sculptures in the principal galleries. They consist of reproductions of typical works preserved elsewhere, and important as illustrating the general history of classical sculpture. The collection is, in the main, that which was formed by the late Walter Copland Porry at the Victoria and Albert Museum in 1884, and which was transferred to the British Museum, by the Board of Education, in 1907. Other casts have been added, which were previously in the British Museum, or have been subsequently acquired. On the other hand, casts in the Perry collection from originals in the British Museum were not included in the transfer, and casts from the sculptures of the Parthenon, and of the temple at Aegina, are shown in the Elgin Room and Archaic Room.
The series begins with the earliest works in the corner to the right of the entrance. The visitor then passes round the room with the left hand to the wall. The reliefs on the screens are, broadly speaking, a parallel series to the sculptures of the north side of the
room, and the figures along the central gangway are a parallel series to those on the south or far side of the room.
The following are some of the principal objects in the gallery :
Screen A 1. Casts of sculptures excavated by Sir Arthur Evans in the Palace of Cnossos, in Crete, assigned to the fifteenth century B.C. (see p. 194). These include a male torso wearing a lily necklace, an arm holding a vase, a head of a bull, etc. The originals are executed in coloured gesso duro. Other Cretan objects here represented by casts are a sculptured jar of limestone, a frieze of rosettes and spirals in limestone resembling porphyry, and a sculptured chair, in gypsum, sometimes called the Throne of Minos.
North-west corner. Bas-relief from the Gate of Lions' at Mycenae (see p. 3). The lions stand, heraldically disposed on each side of a column, closely akin to some discovered in Crete. They were seen and mentioned by the ancient traveller Pausanias. • Parts of the circuit walls are still left, including the gate, which is surmounted by lions. These also are said to be the work of the Cyclopes. Near the Gate of Lions is a panel of a decorated ceiling, of the same early period, from Orchomenos.
In the corner of the room is the Apollo of Orchomenos, an early and coarse rendering of the nude male form. In the centre of the gangway is the Hera of Samos, a column-shaped figure, inscribed with a dedication by one Cheramyes to Hera.
Between the first two windows are: an early Athene, from the Acropolis ; a colossal statue, probably one of the brothers Cleobis and Biton, from Delphi; the Artemis of Nikandra, found at Delos in 1878. A metrical inscription down the side records that the figure was dedicated to Artemis by Nikandra, daughter of Deinodikos.
Screen A 2. Examples of early Greek reliefs. In the centre is a cast of a bronze tripod panel, from Olympia. It is interesting to compare the firm and unhesitating drawing of the established decorative forms with the weak and tentative outlines of the subjectgroup (Heracles and the Centaur).
At one end of the screen, two of the votive figures of women (perhaps priestesses), which were found in the excavations of the Acropolis at Athens. One is coloured in imitation of the original. At the other end is the Moschophoros, a figure of a man carrying à calf, and draped in a close-fitting leather jacket, from the Acropolis.
Screen B 1. Three early grave-reliefs with standing male figures. Next the gangway is a coloured facsimile of part of one of the figures from the Acropolis. Behind it is a cast of a singular head of Phoenician-Iberian (?) style, found at Elche in Spain, and now in the Louvre.
At the other end of the screen is an early winged figure from Delos, commonly known as the Victory of Archermos, though there is some doubt as to whether the inscription, which would confirm the attribution, belongs to this figure.
Screen B 2. Early reliefs showing the female and draped human figure.
On the upper part of the opposite wall are :-(1) Archaic reliefs from a temple at Assos in Asia Minor ; (2) Reliefs from one of the so-called Treasuries (or buildings appropriated to the purposes of the different states) at Delphi. The reliefs here shown have been attributed to the Treasury of the Siphnians, and alternatively of the Cnidians. The former attribution is probably preferable. The subjects are the rape of the daughters of Leukippos by the Dioscuri, Castor and Pollux ; and the war of the Gods and Giants.
Screen C 1 has also two Delphic sculptures, namely, the Dioscuri and the hero Idas driving cattle, being one of the metopes of the Treasury of Sicyon ; and Theseus in combat with an Amazon, a metope of the Treasury of the Athenians.
Below, Attic reliefs of the 5th-4th centuries B.C. Nos. 2704, 2699 have a rich acanthus decoration.
At the end of the screen is the “ Apollo of Tenea,' a comparatively advanced example of the nude male type, probably representing Apollo.
Screen C 2. Two fine Attic reliefs, viz., 619, Relief of Hegeso, who is seen taking a necklace from a box which is held by a servant standing before her ; 620, Relief of Ameinokleia, who is engaged with a girl adjusting her left sandal.
On the opposite side of the gangway are the Athenian Tyrannicides, Harmodios and Aristogeiton, from Naples. The figures are copies of a group dedicated on the Acropolis of Athens.
On the opposite side of the window are the Discobolos of Myron (Vatican) and a reduced copy of the Discobolos in the Lancelotti Palace at Rome, which should be compared with the marble in the Second Graeco-Roman Room. It is to be noted that the Lancelotti replica gives the correct pose of the heads (cf. fig. 47). Beside the Discobolos is the Marsyas of Myron, supposed to be part of a group of Athene throwing away the flutes in disgust, and Marsyas, astonished, about to pick them up.
2688. Charioteer (the original is in bronze) from Delphi, commonly supposed to have been dedicated by Polyzalos of Syracuse about 478 B.C. On the supposition that polyzalos occurring in the inscription is an epithet, the charioteer has been attributed to the chariot group of Battos of Cyrene, by Amphion of Cnossos. In that case Pausanias mistook the sex of the figure, since he calls the charioteer Cyrene.
Screen 1 1. Relief of Dexileõs, a knight who fell in an action on Corinthian territory in 394 B.C.
Screen D 2. Later Attic reliefs.
At the end of the screen is the Apollo of Piombino, a bronze in the Louvre of late archaic style.
Screen El. Later Attic reliefs.
At the ends of screens E and F are replicas of the statue attributed to Polycleitos, known as the Diadumenos, a young athlete tying a fillet about his head (cf. p. 108). The one copy was excavated at Delos, and the other is at Madrid.
At the end of Screen G is the Naples copy of the companion work of Polycleitos known as the Doryphoros, a young spear-bearer.
On the opposite wall is a large relief from Eleusis, probably of a votive character, and representing Triptolemos between Demeter and Persephone. He may be receiving ears of corn from the former and a wreath from the latter, but this interpretation has been much disputed.
Along the upper part of this wall is the West frieze of the Theseion at Athens, representing the battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs.
Next on the right are reliefs from the balustrade which surrounded the platform on which stood the Temple of Wingless Victory at Athens. Victories are represented as leading a bull to sacrifice, decking a trophy, loosening a sandal, etc.
Below the frieze are :--
(1) The Wounded Amazon of the Capitoline type. If correctly restored the right hand would be leaning on a spear, while the left hand would raise drapery to the wound. This type of Amazon is generally assigned to Cresilas (about 440-425 B.C.).
(2) The so-called Apollo delle Terme, which was found in the bed of the Tiber in 1891. It appears to be a Graeco-Roman copy of an Attic work, slightly earlier than the middle of the 5th cent. B.C.
(3) · Apollo on the omphalos,' a figure akin to the ChoiseulGouthier Apollo in the Archaic Room (p. 11). The figure is so named because it has sometimes been placed on a sculptured Apollinine Delphic • omphalos' found at the same time, but whether this arrangement is correct is a matter of dispute.
On the end wall, facing the gangway, are models and casts illustrating the sculptures of the Temple of Zeus at Olympia (about 460 B.C.).
The metopes show: (1) Heracles subduing the Cretan bull : (2) Heracles supporting heaven on his shoulders in relief of Atlas, who brings the apples of the Hesperides ; (3) Athene seated, from a metope showing the slaying of the Stymphalian birds.
The East pediment (see the reduced model) showed the preparations for the chariot race between Pelops and Oenomaos for the hand of Hippodameia, daughter of Oenomaos. The sculptures are assigned by Pausanias to Paionios, author of the Victory (see below).
The West pediment (see the reduced model) shows the battle of Centaurs and Lapiths in the presence of Apollo. This group is assigned by Pausanias to Alcanenes.
Casts of five heads from the pediments give the true scale of the sculptures.
Screen F 2. Later Attie reliefs.
Screen G 1 (above). The so-called Ludovisi Medusa, which is in fact the head of a dying woman, of the Pergamene school of sculpture ;