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  • Lori-Ann Touchette

Two Panathenaic Amphorae from Vulci

Two Panathenaic amphorae from Vulci are on display in the Vatican Museums. The earliest one is attributed to the Michigan painter and dates to 510-500 BC, whereas the other by the Berlin Painter and dates to 480-460 BC. Filled with olive oil from the Grove of Athena in the Academia, these storage amphorae were given to the winner of the panhellenic games held in Athens every four years. On the front the Athena Promachus by Phidias on the Akropolis is represented. An inscription flanking the column reads τῶν Ἀθήνηθεν ἄθλων "(one) of the prizes from Athens". On the reverse, the actual contest for which the vase was presented appears. Noteworthy is the conservative character of the vases, evidenced for instance by the continued use of black-figure technique long after the switch to red-figure circa 530 BC. Pseudo-Panathenaic vases lack the inscription and seem to have been made as souvenirs for the tourist trade.

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