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Lenormant Trireme Relief

Shallow relief showing the middle part of a trireme.

Triremes were large Greek warships powered by sails and oars, with three levels of rowers. Technologically they were superior in naval battle and a key part of the military dominance by Athens of the Aegean Sea in the fifth century BCE. This success helped create the wealth that enabled the construction of the Parthenon and other great buildings on the Acropolis.

This relief proved invaluable in the 1980s when a team of scholars set out to reconstruct and test a modern trireme replica

Pentelic marble
Location of Original: 

Athens, Acropolis Museum 1339

0.40 x 0.54m

Given by Sir Patrick Colquhoun of St John’s college in 1873-4 to the Fitzwilliam Museum; transferred to the Museum in 1884


Lippold: Griechische Plastik, 198 (n.2)
Walston: Catalogue of Casts in the Museum of Classical Archaeology (1889), 20, no.61
Rumpf: Winckelmannsfestprogramm 95 (1935), 14, pl. IV
Casson: Catalogue of the Acropolis Museum Athens II, 242
Whibley: Companion to Greek Studies, 1st edition, 486, fig.94
Reporter: 19 June 1885, 891, no.56

c.410 BCE

Found on the Acropolis, near the Erechtheum in 1852

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