Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Athens Day 5 - Benaki Museum - Archaeology

The Benaki Museum is housed in a beautiful Neoclassical building that was presented to the state by Antonis Benaki in 1930 in memory of his father Emmanuel Benaki,

 Clay "frying-pan" vessel decorated with impressed triangles and incised running spirals. The purpose of the vessel is unkown, from Euboea, 2800 - 2700 BC

 Clay female figurines with the hands under the breasts and plastic features. Similar figurines were made in Cyprus in the Middle Bronze Age, perhaps under the influence of contacts with the Near East. Syrian workshop, 2nd Millenium BC.

Cypriot bull-shaped rhyton of Base-Ring ware. Rhyta, vessels with a hole at the top and bottom were used in cults for offering libations. They often occur in the shape of the head of a bull or a whole bull, both in Minoan and Mycenaean art, 1450-2000 BC.

 Mycenaean bovine figure and head of a bull figurine with schematic features and linear decoration, 1400 - 1100 BC.

 Minoan cylidrical pyxis deocrated on one side with a tree and on the other with a double axe flanked by sacral horns. This vase was most probably made in a workshop in Eastern Crete and perhaps comes from a tomb, where it had been used as a cinerary urn, 1200 - 1100 BC.

 Cypriot vase decorated with concentric circles, a trefoil mouth oinoche of black on red ware, 750 - 600 BC.

 Skyphos and trefoil-mouthed oinochoe with depictions of horses and a host of filling motifs. The stylistic affinity of the two vases suggests they were made in the same workshop, if not by the same craftsman.

 Large Geometric Amphora from Attica. Decorated with a frieze of meander patterns on the neck and rotae in metoes in the handle zone. Vases of this class have been associated with specific burial rites, given that they were used as cinerary urns exclusively in female burials or as grave markers. Attributed to an Athens workshop, 800 BC.

Black-figure amphora from an Attic workshop, with zones  of sirens and felines alternating with lions, 580 BC.

 Black figure skyphoid vase with a zone of aquatic birds of the "Ragusa Group", 590 - 580 BC.

 Black-figure hydria from a provincial Attic workshop, with zones of aquatic birds, sirens and lions. It belongs to the "Ragusa Group", 590 - 580 BC.

 Attic Geometric amphora, it bears a scene of prothesis of the dead and mourners on the neck and zones of linear motifs, warriors and animals on the body. Of interest are the chctonic symbolism of the modelled snakes and the use of applied white pigment to enhance details, 720 - 700 BC

 Mycenaean gold kylix with repoussé representation of running hounds, from Dendra, Argolid, 13th Century BC.

 Boeotian black-figure lekanis decorated with cockerels, sirens, feline and wild boar, mid-6th Century BC.

 Boeotian black-figure skyphos decorated with a crab, an ass and an extremely rare representation of a seal,  500 BC.

 Corinthian black-figure pyxis (container for cometics or jewellery, with a zone of felines and ibexes, 600 - 575 BC

Alabastra with representations of mythical creatures (sphinxes, sirens, griffin) warriors in single file, Boread and winged rosette.

Attic black-figure lekythos with depiction of satyr between two large painted eyes, 500 - 490 BC.

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