No. G 103
Date Range: Attic-blackfigured, 1st quarter 5th. century BC
H. 11,4 cm

Lekythos

The Lekythos shows a team of horses galloping to the right. The bearded charioteer wears a white chiton and holds the reins and a cane (Kentron) with his hands in order to control the horses. Behind the horses goddess Athena rushes to meet them. She is fitted with a lance and a helmet.
The chariot racing events were athletic competitions inside the aristocratic circle. In 680 BC this event was introduced in the olympic games.
The long chiton of the charioteer belongs to his standard outfit. On the back it was tied with straps, so that the drapery couldn´t  be blown out by the wind. The best example of a charioteer features the so-called "Charioteer of Delphi" a bronze statue, which belongs to the time between 478-474 BC During the Panathenaia festival, honored to goddess Athena, there were also chariot races, the "apobatai" part of it. The presence of Athena in this scene probably refers to the Panathenaia festival.

(M.C.)

 

Biblography

W. Deckel, Sport in der griechischen Antike. Vom minoischen Wettkampf bis zu den Olympischen Spielen (München 1995)
U. Kron, Die zehn attischen Phylenheroen, AM Beih. 5 1976, 75-76
M. Weisenhorn, Die hippischen Agone, in Forum Archaeologiae 42/III/2007 <http://farch.net/>

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