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Euboean Lekanai

  • A. D. Ure (a1)


In the Archaeological Institute of the University of Tübingen there is a lekane that was acquired by the late Professor Watzinger too late for inclusion in his Griechische Vasen in Tübingen It has recently been published in an article ‘Zu einigen böotischen Vasen des sechsten Jahrhunderts’ in the Jahrbuch des römisch-germanischen Zentralmuseums Mainz iv by Dr Konrad Schauenburg, who regards it as Boeotian. This lekane (plate IX 1–5; Schauenburg, pl. 8) and one in Munich which goes with it (plate X 1–3, XI 1, 2; CV iii pl. 146.3, 5–7) are similar in many respects to Boeotian lekanai, but I hope to show that they are in fact of the same fabric as the three great grave amphorae from Eretria. The most recent discussion of these amphorae and full bibliographies are to be found in Mr John Boardman's article ‘Pottery from Eretria’, BSA xlvii (1952) 30 ff., to which I shall frequently refer.

In shape the two vases are near to Boeotian lekanai of the orientalising class except that the flat ribbon handles are ‘continuous’, that is, they are formed from a continuous strip of clay which is applied to the rim externally in such a way as to leave a rather pinched loop in the centre and a centimetre or so of the ribbon projecting at each end. The ribbony strip keeps its identity all along and nowhere does it merge into the rim; see plate X 2, 3, XI 1. By contrast, in orientalising lekanai (the largest single Boeotian class) there is no connexion between the projections and the handle, from which they are separated by about a centimetre of normal rim. For a typical example see CV Heidelberg i pl. 27.5. Both the Tübingen and the Munich lekanai have on the rim a row of reversed zeds similar to those which decorate the lip of the Wedding amphora and the Herakles amphora. Immediately above the foot there is a broad black band edged at the top with a red line painted over the black. The base within the foot-ring is decorated with a large black spot inside a small circle. The interior has a tondo framed by a red ring superimposed on the edge of the surrounding black, and two red circles are painted over the black a short distance below the rim. The surface of the Munich lekane has been coloured a deep red, well preserved under the foot. The black glaze on both vases is thinly applied and streaky.

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1 My attention was first drawn to this vase by Professor Watzinger. I am very much indebted to Professor Schweitzer for giving me facilities for studying it in Tübingen and for permission to publish it. I wish to thank Dr H. Luschey for making me new photographs and Dr K. Schauenburg for allowing me to use one of his. Professor Haspels has given me permission to publish the lekane in Amsterdam and Professor Diepolder to figure a new detail of the Munich lekane as well as to reproduce an existing photograph; Mr Boardman has put me much in his debt by generously sharing his notes and photographs, and Professor Trendall by very kindly examining the lekane in Warsaw for me. To these my thanks are due. I am specially grateful to Mrs Karouzou for allowing me to spend a considerable time studying pottery from Euboea in the National Museum and for permission to publish details of the grave amphorae and other vases from Eretria now in Athens. Finally I wish to record my gratitude to the Trustees of the Leverhulme Research Awards for a grant that enabled me to work in Greece in the spring of 1957.

2 Pp. 65 f., pl. 8. This article was already completed when Dr Schauenburg's discussion of the vase appeared. A certain amount of overlapping is therefore inevitable.

3 Inv. 5443.28. Ht. 8·0 to 8·9 cm., diameter without handles 33·8 to 34 cm. The diameter given by Schauenburg, op. cit. 65 n. 15 includes the handles.

4 Inv. 6197. Ht. 10 cm., diam. 32·8 cm.

5 The Wedding amphora, Athens 1004, CC667; the Herakles amphora, Athens 12075, Nicole 889; the Peleus amphora, Athens 12076, Nicole 890.

6 Metropolitan Museum Studies iv 18 f.

7 BSA xlvii pls. 9, 10.

8 MissHaspels, (ABL 29, 107) refers to a number of Attic lotuses with white sepals, but these do not alternate with red buds. Those on lekythoi of the Dolphin class (op. cit. 14 f., 193 f.) are of a different shape, almost globular at the base of the bud, with an elongated tip, cf. CV Reading i pl. 11.7. The Eretrian bud narrows gradually.

9 AJA xlv (1941) 69 n. 36.

10 BSA xlvii 45 f., pl. 14.

11 CA 579, BSA lii (1957) pl. 6a.

12 Cf. the neck-amphorae of the Painter of Vatican 309, e.g. Rumpf, Sakonides pls. 4b, 5c, d, e, f, 27c, d, and the column kraters of the Painter of Louvre F6, CV Oxford ii pl. 12.7, 8, 10.

13 Boston 552, Fairbanks Cat. pl. 62; Neugebauer, Antiken in deutschem Privatbesitz 148 pl. 61, and, related to the orientalising class, Mainz University, formerly Preyss, , Metropolitan Museum Studies iv 34 fig. 28; CV Mainz i pl. 33.4.

14 In Attic the red stripes vary considerably. Those of Kleitias are thin and delicate, closely following the incised line, see Furtwängler-Reichhold, Gr. Vasenmalerei pl. 3. Lydos makes his sometimes in the same way as Kleitias, as on the amphora Naples 2770, JHS li (1931) pl. 13, but elsewhere he has broad blocks of colour completely filling the space between the incised lines as on the Athens dinos Rumpf, , Sakonides pl. 19, or, clearer, Hoppin, Handbook of Greek B.F. Vases 161. Those on the commoner kind of Attic vase tend to look like sausages.

15 These well-shaped tapering markings are found also on some unpublished vases in Chalcis Museum. They are not exclusively Euboean, but are found on a few Boeotian, vases, see BICS vi (1959) 2 pl. 1.2d. Similar stripes, though generally less pointed, can be seen on Pontic vases and on some Rhodian.

16 For the Euboean habit of embellishing petals or leaves with a spot of added colour, see BSA lii pl. 7a and f (the latter, Athens 16327, wrongly marked g on the plate).

17 I am much indebted to Mrs Koch for information about this pyxis. There is no photograph extant, and I owe my knowledge of it to sketches made by the late R. P. Austin.

18 Nat. Mus. 16343. Diam. 33 cm.

19 Though the posture is different, the folds of his himation agree with those of the third figure from the right on the neck of the Peleus amphora, the incised curve across the eyeball which gives life to his eye has a counterpart on the figure on the extreme left. On this latter figure also, as on the little man of the lekane, the middle incised fold of the himation cuts right across the vertical fold that hangs down in front.

20 Allard Pierson Museum inv. 273, Algemeene Gids 1322; Scheurleer, Catalogus eener Verzameling Egyptische, Grieksche, Romeinsche en andere Oudheden no. 388, pl. 36.2.

21 So Scheurleer, op. cit. 190.

22 No. 87 of the catalogue by D. von Bothmer of the Exhibition of Greek, Etruscan and Roman Antiquities held in New York, 1950. It is now regarded by Dr von Bothmer as Eretrian. He also attributes to the same hand a lekythos with a sphinx between running youths in Rostock, , AA 1918 126 no. 20 fig. 14 (Beazley, ABV 716 addendum to p. 698).

23 The Lehmann lekythos is connected with Chalcis 567 by ProfessorHaspels, , ABL 29. She also puts it close to the Rhitsona lekythos 49.253, Ure, , Sixth pl. 13. I would rather connect the Lehmann lekythos and the Amsterdam lekane with Rhitsona 51.229, Sixth 42 class C, pl. 13, with which goes 51.228, BSA xiv, pl. 9 f., both of which I now suspect to be Euboean.

24 Diameter more than 30 cm. I have never handled this vase and have seen only the inside, through glass, in 1930. My knowledge of the outside is drawn from photographs sent me soon after by Professor Noack, here reproduced in plate XIII 1–3, and from notes made by P. N. Ure in 1914. A few details remain uncertain and have therefore been left out of the discussion.

25 So Schauenburg, op. cit. 64 n. 10, though with a query.

26 E.g. on the Eye-siren vase, London B 215, CV iv pl. 52.1 (goats on shoulder), on vases by the Nikoxenos Painter such as London B 238 CV iv pl. 58.2, and occasionally on Little Master cups.

27 Inv. 138370. Ht. 11 cm., diam. 35·5 cm.

28 Found in Attic also; cf. the buds edged with red on the vase by Theozotos, Louvre F 69, Hoppin, Handbook of Greek B.F. Vases 353, and the Geryon amphora in Angeles, Los, Hesperia xxiv (1955) pl. 1b.

29 This shrinking of the paint away from the edge of an object is a common phenomenon in Eretrian, cf. the black buds on the foot of the Herakles, amphora BICS vi (1959) pl. 3.4.

30 Ht. 9 cm., diam. without handles 32·5 cm.

Euboean Lekanai

  • A. D. Ure (a1)


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