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Archeological Object

Pronomos Vase

Pronomos Vase

Moulded oblique rim, broad cylindrical neck, ovoid body tapering towards the bottom with almost horizontal shoulder, vertical rod-shaped handles ending, in the upper part, on the rim, in spirals; the vase is supported by a high funnel-shaped foot. Side A: the scene contains numerous characters arranged on two registers, each identified by their names engraved in Greek next to them and represents the preparation of the recital of a satirical play in the presence of Dionysius and Ariadne. The god, wearing a himation on his legs and an ivy wreath with a headband on his hair, holds the thyrsus in his right hand and with the left embraces Ariadne, who, watching him, responds to his gesture. The girl is wearing an embroidered chiton and himation, jewels on her arms and around her neck, and a headband around her hair, gathered in a bun. Next to Ariadne is a girl with an embroidered chiton and precious jewels who is seated and looks towards the divine couple while she holds a female mask in her left hand. On her left is the kneeling figure of the young child Himeros, who holds his hands out towards the mask. Further to the right are a pair of characters who are facing each other: the first is an actor with a beard who can clearly be identified as playing the role of Heracles not only due to the inscription, but also to the club he is carrying on his left shoulder and the bow with quiver on his left side. The man is wearing a short and richly embroidered chiton, high boots and armour, while in his lowered right hand he is holding a mask. In front of him is an actor, also bearded, identified as Papposilenus by his chiton dotted with tufts of white hair, with the bearded mask of Silenus and ivy wreath which he is holding up in his right hand to show to Heracles; on his left shoulder he is carrying a lion skin, in the left hand a club, while behind him there is a tripod on a column. Beneath the handle of the vase there is a young choral dancer sitting, with an ivy wreath around his head; he is almost nude, dressed only in a leather loincloth fitted with a Satyr tail and a phallus and is shown holding a bearded mask in his left hand. On the left side of the cline of Dionysius, besides a slender vine-shoot, there is a bearded actor with a long embroidered himation. Holding a mask in his lowered right hand, he faces two young choral dancers, both wearing hairy loincloths and holding their satirical masks in their hands. On this side there is also a tripod decorated with bands, beyond which is sitting a choral dancer, looking around him with the satirical mask in his right hand. The centre of the lower register is occupied by the seated figure of the flautist Pronomos, dressed with an embroidered himation and a laurel wreath, in the act of playing his instrument. On the right, a young cithara player greets him, holding his instrument in his lowered left hand and dressed in a chlamys which covers only his shoulders. On the right there is another choral dancer who, with mask in hand, is talking to a companion dressed in the usual satirical costume and seated in front of the pedestal of the tripod. Behind them, beneath the handle, another group of two choral dancers are in conversation. To the left of Pronomos is another choral dancer-Satyr, practising the sikinnis, a sort of satirical dance, with his face covered by his mask. Seated on a bench, a young musician with an ivy wreath, dressed only in a chlamys and with a flute in his left hand, observes him in admiration. On the bench there is another flute, while a cithara hangs from his shoulders. Finally, beneath the handle there is another group of two young choral dancers-Satyrs, the first of whom is seated with his left foot resting on a stone. Side B: at the centre Dionysius and Ariadne are moving forwards to the left. The god is naked with an ivy wreath and a headband in his hair and holds the cithara in his right hand, while with the left he embraces Ariadne, dressed in embroidered chiton and himation. To the left of Dionysius is a naked Eros flying to the right, followed by a naked choral dancer-Satyr with a kantharos in his right hand, and to the right of Ariadne is another choral dancer-Satyr playing a double flute. In the lower register, from left to right, there is a choral dancer-Satyr who seems to be performing a dance step and a Maenad with embroidered chiton, both moving towards the right. At the centre is a panther, followed by another Maenad and another naked choral dancer-Satyr with a tail. Additional decoration: from the top down, rows of ovolo bands, lesbian cyma, a frieze of straight lotus palmettes, a wreath of laurel leaves and berries, row of ovolo bands; beneath the figurative scene, there is a frieze of alternating meanders and chequerboard panels; on the volutes of the handles there is a garland of laurel and berries. The krater (named after the painter to whom it is attributed), one of the masterpieces of Attic pottery of the late 5th century BC, is extremely famous due to the wealth of information it gives us about satirical drama, its characters, costumes and musicians; it commemorates, like a poster, a famous performance of the theatre company whose most important character, given the central position directly beneath that of Dionysius, seems to have been the flautist Pronomos, a real character who is known from other sources as a famous Boeotian musician in Athens at that time.

Further information
Codici (Label is not translated)
  Ente_competente: Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici delle Province di Napoli e Caserta
  SGTI: preparazione dramma satiresco alla presenza di Dioniso ed Arianna.
Localizzazione_geografico-amministrativa (Label is not translated)
  PVCS: Italia
  regione: CAMPANIA
  provincia: Napoli
  comune: Napoli
  LDCT: palazzo
  Name: Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli
  Indirizzo: Piazza Museo, 19 - 80135
  LDCM: Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli
  Location: In storage
Altre_localizzazioni_geografico_amministrative_reperimento (Label is not translated)
  PRVS: Italia
  regione: PUGLIA
  provincia: Bari
  comune: Ruvo di Puglia
  PRCM: Collezione Ficco-Cervone
Altre_localizzazioni_geografico_amministrative_provenienza (Label is not translated)
  Provenance: Ruvo, Ficco and Cervone Collection; June 19 1838
Dati_patrimoniali (Label is not translated)
  Inventory number: 81673
  INVD: 1863 post
Definizione_culturale (Label is not translated)
  Author: Pronomos Painter
Dati_tecnici (Label is not translated)
  MISU: cm.
  Height: 75
  Diameter: 33.5
Dati_analitici (Label is not translated)
  Inscriptions - language: Greek
  Inscriptions - text:

Condizione_giuridica_e_vincoli (Label is not translated)
  CDGG: proprietà Stato
Fonti_e_documenti_di_riferimento (Label is not translated)

Heydemann 1872a, n. 3240, pp. 546-550, tav. X, 3240; Arias 1962, pp. 377-380, tavv. 218-219; ARV 1963, n. 1, p. 1336; de Franciscis 1963, p. 66, fig. 39; Paralipomena 1971, p. 480; Trendall 1971, p. 29, n. II,1; Simon 1981, pp. 153-154, tavv. 228-229; LIMC III,1, 1986, p. 483, s.v. Dionysos, n. 719; LIMC III, 2, 1986, p. 383; LIMC III,1, 1986, p. 493, s.v. Dionysos, n. 835; LIMC III, 2, 1986, p. 399; LIMC III,1, 1986, p. 910, s.v. Eros, n. 703; Boardman 1989 pp. 167-168, fig. 323; Carpenter 1989, p. 365; LIMC V,1, 1990, pp. 186-187, s.v. Herakles; LIMC V,1, 1990, p. 426, s.v. Himeros, Himeroi, n. 18; LIMC V, 2, 1990, p. 300; De Caro 1994, p. 68; LIMC VII,1, 1994, p. 52, s.v. Omphale; Green 1995 n. 5, p. 22-23; Vésuve 1995, n. 9, pp. 90-91; Vulkan 1995, n. 9, pp. 90-91; I Greci in Occidente MANN 1996, p. 34; LIMC VIII,1, 1997, p. 628, s.v. Hesione, n. 63; LIMC VIII,1, 1997, p. 1124, s.v. Silenoi, n. 152; De Caro 1999, pp. 211-213; Krumeich 1999, tavv. 8-9; De Caro 2001b, p. 144; Ercole 2001, n. 59, pp. 105-107; Miti greci 2004, n. 254, p. 265. Per il Pittore di Pronomos: ARV 1963, pp. 1335-1336; Paralipomena 1971, p. 480; Boardman 1989, pp. 167-168.