The Ancient Library

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referring to the paintings of Evanthes in the opis-thodomus of the temple of Jupiter Casius, men­tioned by Achilles Tatius (iii. 6), not a very good authority (see evanthes). It may also be ob­jected that the name of Polygnotus is not men­tioned in the extant inscription respecting the works of this temple. But it is perhaps enough to say that the conjecture is too violent to be admitted by itself; especially when it is contrasted with the explanation of Reinesius, who, for *v ry ©flffavptp would read ev T<p ©Tjtrews tepqi. Now, the temple of Theseus was built during the admi­nistration of Cimon, after the translation of the hero's remains from Scyros to Athens in b. c. 468. If, therefore, as is almost certain, Cimon brought Polygnotus with him from Thasos in b. c. 463, it would almost certainly be partly with a view to the decoration of this very temple. Pausanias, indeed, in his description of the temple (i. 17. § 2), ascribes the paintings in it to Micon, but this is rather a confirmation of the argument than other­wise, for these two artists more than once assisted in decorating the same building. It is an obvious conjecture, from a comparison of the dates, that Micon was already employed upon the painting of the temple before the arrival of Polygnotus, who was then appointed to assist him. [Comp. micon.]

2. Paintings in iJie Stoa Poecile at Athens.— Among the works which Cimon undertook for the improvement of the city, after the final termination of the Persian wars, the spoils of which furnished ,him with the means, one of the first was the deco­ration of the places of public resort, such as the Agora and the Academy, the former of which he planted with plane-trees (Plut. dm. 3). He also enlarged and improved the portico which ran along one side of the Agora, and which was called at first the Portico of Peisianax (ri Ileunaj/ciKTeios oToa), but afterwards received the name of the Poecile or Painted Porlico (77 Trouci\r] trroa), from the paintings with which it was decorated. (Pans, i. 15 ; Muller, Phid. 6 ; Bottiger, p. 275.) Ci­mon executed this work soon after his return from Thasos (Plut. /. c.), and employed Polygnotus and Micon to decorate the portico with those paintings, from which it afterwards obtained its name. The portico itself was a long colonnade, formed by a row of columns on one side and a wall on the other; and against this wall were placed the paintings, which were on panels. These paintings, as they appeared in the time of Pausanias, represented four subjects : — (1.) The battle of Oenoe, fought between the Athenians and Lacedaemonians, the painter of which was unknown ; (2.) The battle of Theseus and the Athenians with the Amazons, by Micon ; (3.) The Greeks, after the taking of Troy, assembling to judge the case of Cassandra's violation by Ajax ; this painting was by Polygnotus ; (4.) The battle of Marathon, by Panaenus; also ascribed to Micon and to Polygnotus, who may have assisted in the work. (Paus. /. c.; Bottiger, pp. 274—290 ; micon, panaenus.) From the description of Pausanias, it would seem that, in the picture of Polygnotus, the Greek chieftains, sitting in judg­ment, formed the centre of the composition, with the Grecian army grouped on the one side, and, on the other, the Trojan captives, among whom Cassandra was conspicuous. Bottiger supposes that, in his treatment of the subject, the artist


followed the 'l\iov Hepais of the cyclic poet Arc-tinus. Bottiger also supposes that there were two or three panels, representing different stages of the event; a supposition for which there does not seem to be sufficient reason. The subject, as representing the first great victory of the united Greeks, was appropriately connected with the cele­bration of their recent triumphs.

3. In the Anaceium, or Temple of the Dioscuri, at Athens, which was perhaps more ancient than the time of Cimon, who seems to have repaired and beautified it, Polygnotus painted the marriage of the daughters of Leucippus, as connected with the mythology of the Dioscuri (TloXvyvcaros /ue^ exovra es avrovs eypatye yd^ov roov bvyarepoov twi> AevKLTnrou, Paus. i. 18. § 1), and Micon painted the Argonautic expedition. The subject of Polygnotus was evidently that favourite subject of ancient poetry and art, the rape of Phoebe and Hilaera on their marriage-day, by Castor and Pollux : the ancient form of the legend, which was followed by Polygnotus, is supposed by Bot~ tiger to have been contained in the cyclic poem entitled Cypria, which related to the events before the Iliad. We still possess, in bas-reliefs on ancient sarcophagi, three if not four representations of the story, which \ve may safely assume to have been imitated from the picture of Polygnotus, and which strikingly display that uniform symmetry, which we know to have been one characteristic of his works, in contradistinction to the more natural grouping of a later period. In modern times, Rubens has painted the story of Phoebe and Hilaera in a picture, now at Munich, which would doubtless present a most interesting contrast to the treatment of the same subject by Polygnotus, if we had but the opportunity of comparing them. The sculptures also, which are presumed to have been taken after the painting of Polygnotus, have fur­nished David with some ideas for his Rape of the Sabine women. (Bottiger, pp. 291—295.)

4. In the temple of Athena Areia at Plataeae, Polygnotus and Onatas painted the walls of the front portico (that is, probably, the wall on each side of the principal entrance) ; Polygnotus repre­sented Ulysses just after he had slain the suitors. (Paus. ix. 4. § 1 ; Horn. Od. xxii.)

5. His paintings on the walls of the temple of Thespiae have been already mentioned. Nothing is known of their subject.

6. Paintings in the Lesche of the Cnidians at Delphi. — Some of the same causes which led to the sudden development of art at Athens, in the age following that of the Persian wars, gave a similar impulse to its advancement about the same time in other places, especially at those two centres of the Greek union and religion, Olympia and Delphi. The great works at the former place have been spoken of under pheidias ; those at the latter appear to have been executed not only about the same time (or rather, perhaps, a little earlier), but also by Athenian artists chiefly/ We know, for example, that the statues in the pediments of the temple at Delphi were made by praxias of Athens, the disciple of Calamis, and finished, after his death, by androsthenes, the disciple of Eu-cadmus (Paus. x. 19. § 3). These artists must have been contemporary with Pheidias and Poly­gnotus ; and there are some other indications of the employment of Athenian artists at Delphi about the same period (Muller, Phid. p. 28, n. y.).

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