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Museum of Classical Archaeology Databases

Temple of Athena at Ilion, Helios metope

Early Hellenistic architectural relief depicting Helios the sun god in his chariot.

Ilion is another name for Troy, and this sculpture the best preserved metope from the later of two temples to Athena on the site. The metope shows the sun god Helios driving his four horses with such vigour as to be barely contained by the frame. The disc (nimbus) with rays coming out of it behind Helios’s head is unusual, as is the treatment of the horses; they have rather schematic musculature and proportions, with small heads. It is likely that the chariot would have been completed in now-lost paint, as probably were other details, since the carving is not highly finished

Location of Original: 

Berlin, Pergamon Museum

0.86 x 0.86m

?Purchased in 1884 from Martinelli of Athens?


Lippold: Griechische Plastik, 307 (n.4), pl. 110.1
Brunn-Bruckmann: Denkmäler Griechischer und Römischer Skulptur, pl. 162a
Kähler: Das Griechische Metopenbild III, pl. 95
Lawrence: Later Greek Sculpture (1927), 116
Walston: Catalogue of Casts in the Museum of Classical Archaeology (1889), 91, no.491
Webb: Hellenistic Architectural Sculpture (1996), 47

280-300 BCE

Unearthed by Schliemann at Troy

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