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Grave Stele of an Athlete

A weathered memorial stone of a young man mourned by his father.

At the feet of the young deceased man crouches a servant boy who appears to be asleep. He is holding the sportsman’s strigil and aryballos, indicating that the dead man was an athlete. The two main figures, father and son, are unusually close together, which has led to an odd overlapping of hands and arm. Also out of the ordinary is the look of extreme dejection in the younger man’s face and stance; he seems to be in mourning for himself

Pentelic marble
Location of Original: 

Athens, National Museum 871


Lippold: Griechische Plastik, 252 (n.1), for type of stele
Walston: Catalogue of Casts in the Museum of Classical Archaeology (1889), 75, no.358
Papaspiridi: Guide du Musée Nationale d’Athènes (1927), 154
Conze: Die Attischen Grabreliefs (1890-1922) II, 225, pl. CCX
Clairmont: Classical Attic Tombstones (1993), vol. II, 824


Found in the Dipylon cemetery in Athens, in 1840

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