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Selene, goddess of the moon, & Endymion | Greek vase, Apulian red figure volute krater

T18.4 SELENE & ENDYMION

Museum Collection: Dallas Museum of Art, Texas, USA
Catalogue No.: TBA
Beazley Archive No.: N/A
Ware: Apulian Red Figure
Shape: Krater, volute
Painter: Attributed to the Underworld Painter
Date: C4th BC
Period: Late Classical / Early Hellenistic

SUMMARY

The upper panel depicts the shepherd Endymion luring the moon-goddess Selene from the sky with a shining fleece. The goddess rides in a four-horse chariot, and is crowned with a crescent moon and aureole. To her left (see other image) stand Aphrodite and Peitho, the goddesses of love and seduction. To the right of Endymion is Athena and a serpent-entwined tree (not shown) which encompasses both the upper and lower panels. The Endymion, Athena and serpent-tree are probably simultaneously designed to represent the story of Jason and the golden fleece.
The lower panel depicts Herakles in his quest for the golden apples of the Hesperides. The figures from left to right are Hermes, Herakles, Atlas enthroned as a king, Gaia the earth-goddess, and a Hesperid standing before the serpent-entwined tree.
The two or possibly three scenes (assuming Jason and Endymion are represented by the same figure) are almost certainly based on tragedy plays. Only the figures of Atlas, Ge, Aphrodite and Selana are labelled on the vase.
The back of the krater contains a non-mythological funerary scene.

ARTICLESSelene

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