Page images

XX. ; a cast of it is in the British Museum. The original of XXI. is in the British Museum, containing part of the horses belonging to the chariot of the next slab. Their tails are very primitive in execution.

Slab XXII.-In the British Museum, with the addition of casts from fragments in Athens, i.e. body of chariot, lower part of apobates and groom up to waist, and fore legs of the horses. The apobates, 65, is a fine figure in the act of stepping up into the chariot as it starts. The action of the left leg seems to indicate stepping up; so also the position of the shield. He appears to be pulling himself together rather than letting himself go; and in this manner his whole figure separates itself definitely from the guide or groom behind him, 66. This guide stands quietly at the heads of his horses, holding the reins of the foremost. His chariot has not yet started. He wears only a chlamys, not the ample himation of the previous guides.

Slab XXIII.-In the British Museum. Chariot not yet in motion. The left arm of the apobates, with shield, is on next slab.

A cast from a fragment of his head has been added.

Slab XXIV.-In the British Museum. Part of the foremost group of horsemen. To the front of this slab is fitted the fragment of shield and left arm assigned by Michaelis to Slab XXVIII. of the south frieze.

Slab XXV.-Fragment in the British Museum from the cavalcade. In Carrey's drawing this fragment is followed by the single horseman, 77, given in Pl. XVII., Fig. 2.

Slab XXVI.-In the British Museum. Horsemen.
Slab XXVII.-We follow Michaelis in assigning to this

slab the fine fragment of which a cast is in the British Museum (Pl. XV., Fig. 1), and the marble head of a youth in the British Museum (frontispiece), formerly in Karlsruhe.

Slab XXVIII.-In the British Museum. We have already called attention to this slab as one of the finest examples on the frieze of the treatment of excessively low bas-relief in the fore legs of the horses. “The composition is equally beautiful, but the slab is considerably damaged.

Slab XXIX.-From a cast in the British Museum ; the original in Athens. Here the crowding of the previous slab is compensated for by the free space which is given the horseman, 88, who turns round easily, with his left arm falling negligently on the flank of his horse, to notice the commotion immediately behind, where a marshal, 89, energetically represses the next horsemen. This action of the marshal, following upon the easy bearing of the preceding rider, provides an artistic break in the composition, which the spectator accepts with the greatest pleasure and admiration. The body of the horseman, 88, is heavy in the cast, but this is really due to the swelling of the plaster, and is no fault of the original.

Slabs XXX., XXXI.-From casts in the British Museum; the originals in Athens. Here the advance of the horsemen is more or less leisurely. The horse of 95 shows only the two hind legs, and one of these is almost completely covered by a leg of the nearer horse. It is not usual in the frieze for one leg to cover the other quite so fully as here. The manes are roughly rendered, so also is the drapery

On the whole this slab does not rank high. 96 repeats the favourite attitude of turning round, with the

of 94, 95.

97 is

left arm falling negligently on the flank of the horse. probably setting right his wreath with his right hand. Between these two slabs is a gap.

Slab XXXII.-In the British Museum. From this point onward the slabs of the north frieze form a continuous series, and are all in the British Museum. The absence of horses' tails, frequently noticeable in the cavalcade, may be observed here in the horse of 98. The intention, as we have already pointed out, was to secure what we may call breathing spaces between the crowded groups of horse's legs by omitting the tails, or hiding them as far as possible.

Slab XXXIII.-In the British Museum, is densely crowded, with again the attitude of a rider, 103, turning in his seat to look back. But this time he is almost wholly nude, even more so than 88. His mantle shows only on his right arm a little and at the left side ; his left hand catches the end of the mantle on the flank of the horse, but the fine outlines of the arm are lost behind the chest of the next horse. 101 has his back turned to the spectator a little. It need not be supposed that the riders in the attitude of turning round to the front are in any sense leaders of squads. They are rather artistic necessities to provide breaks in the general uniformity of a long line of horsemen, where the spectator can rest and be thankful.

Slab XXXIV. - In the British Museum. The horse of 106 has one forefoot on the ground. That is unusual. In most cases both fore legs are raised. But compare the horses of 122 and 125, apparently also 127; and, of course, the horse of 133 is standing still, with both forefeet on the ground. A fragment of this slab, showing the hind legs of

the horse of 106, has recently been identified at the Museum by Mr. Arthur Smith.

Slab XXXV.-In the British Museum ; is a richly composed group, not unlike XXVIII. in composition and in the extreme delicacy and lowness of the relief. There is some crowding, yet not only is every point clearly defined and the whole action of man and horse consentaneous, but there is also throughout this slab a constant crossing of lines and forms which stirs an inexpressible sense of beauty. 108 wears a leather cap.

Slab XXXVI.-In the British Museum. Here we have again the almost nude rider turning round in his seat, with left arm thrown back, 11. We have already discussed (p. 116) the extraordinary beauty of this left arm and the moving folds of the mantle beside it. He is allowed more space to himself than in the previous instances, except, perhaps, 88. But in each case there is the unfailing element of diversity in some particular. The tail of his horse is merely sketched in against the foreleg of the next horse. A wide space is thus left on each side of the hind legs of his horse. The effect is to give prominence and repose as well to the figure. An attractive feature in 112 is his head just showing over the nearer horse. The upper left-hand corner of this slab has recently been identified at Colne Park, Essex.

Slab XXXVII.-In the British Museum, may be described as somewhat stately and more or less normal, but still full of charm.

Slab XXXVIII.-In the British Museum. Introduces some new elements of variety. 116 wears a helmet and cuirass; 117 a leather cap; 118 turns his back partly to the

spectator in a perfectly natural, but quite exceptional, manner. He is distinctly a new conception. Very fine also is the crowding together of the heads of the two foremost horses and the action of their fore legs, which, though apparently identical, yet differ in this, that it is the near fore leg of the second horse which is raised.

Slabs XXXIX., XL.-In the British Museum. The former is fine in composition, the latter much injured.

Slab XLI.-In the British Museum, is the most complex slab in the whole frieze, as we have already pointed out in detail (p. 111). We need not here enlarge further on the number of different planes in the sculpture and the incomparable clearness and beauty of the work, to say nothing of the charms of the composition.

Slab XLII.-In the British Museum, is the last slab on the north side. We have here a scene of preparation which may be described as a continuation of the west frieze. One of the horsemen is already mounted, 132. The other two are in separate stages of preparation. 131, turned round full to the front, appears colossal in size compared with the mounted youths in front and compared also with the youth standing in profile near by, 133. The action of this latter figure and of the boy behind him has already been discussed (p. 97). The element of repose in this slab forms an admirable beginning for this side of the frieze. Of 1 30 nothing but his right hand is visible.

West Frieze. Slab 1.- In the British Museum. This solitary marshal is sculptured on the right return of N. XLII. The placid

« PreviousContinue »