Greco-Persian art in Anatolia

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Greco-Persian art in Anatolia
2014-03-02 11:53:01

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    • Can Sarcophagus and Chalcedony Scaraboid
    • 'Persian' attacking 'Greek'
    • Sarcophagus 400BC
    • Also a stag hunt and boar hunt to left and right-hand sides of long edge
    • Found in NW Anatolia!
    • Battle
    • Persian heroic on horse
    • Very unusual armour - neck and arm-protecting armour, long trousers, cap/helmet, 2 rows of pteryges

    • Fights a fallen warrior
    • Supported by Greek warrior? Perhaps a mercenary - he carries a makhaira. He and the fallen warrior are dressed similarly - long-sleeved tunics - but henchman coloured to match Persian (red trousers)
    • Unusual composition with trees and rocks + there is a falcon above
    • Possibly depicting a specific place. 
    • Scenes from life of the deceased and glorified his achievements. 

    • Hunt Scene
    • Stag hunt - v damaged
    • Boar hunt - dogs' veins rendered, v aggressive! Large boar, even for A Minor where they were shown larger than in Greece.
    • Horse's main and tail tied
    • Figure has long sleeved tunic and long trousers
    • Tiara
    • Spear
    • Red shoes, hair and lips

    • Dynast-commissioned?
    • Battle rider and boar hunter have same spear motif and identical noses! Probably same man.

    • NB. Persians usually depicted Persians with bows and on foot.
    • Lykian thing to have horses.
    • Satraps in Caria were puppets of the Persians but took on Greek customs and gods etc. 
    • Or Greek with Persian customs.
    • Wooden beam paintings 5thC BC
    • Tomb in Tatarli, (Phrygia)
    • Warfare and Convoy scenes

    Reconstructions of painted wooden beams 

    • Achaemenid Era
    • Top: Warfare
    • Bottom: Convoy
    • Both over 2m long

    • We have very few examples of wood
    • paintings, though widespread
    • Figures incised into wood and then coloured

    • Battle Scene
    • 12 warriors coming from left
    • 11 coming from right (fewer = inferior)
    • Victorious warriors coming from left is a
    • convention
    • Far right warrior is shot
    • Centre right is stabbed
    • Two on the floor
    • One arrow flying through the air suggests
    • those in the centre will not be safe long

    • Centre left figure is larger
    • Red clothes, draped, sleeved
    • He has a dagger, bow and quiver
    • Shoes of ordinary Persians
    • Long hair and beard
    • Crown – kidaris?
    • (royal hat) NB other Persians wore a crenelated crown – nobles, women, servants,
    • sphinxes!
    • Earring
    • Long, curved nose

    • Eye: 
    • long upper lid, iris at the open end – follows a stylistic development of the early Classical period in Greek art. Late Archaic eyes in profile are usually shown in frontal view.

    Left-hand archers have the same hair, beards and headgear

    • Chariot: two quivers, eight spoked wheel
    • correspond to Achaemenid depictions of chariots

    Driver – has pteryges (the leather flaps)

    • Archer – wide sleeves. Apparently he has 2
    • right arms! Cf Karabun II – 2 left hands

    • All riders have Median trousers with zigzag
    • pattern
    • Tiaras
    • Bows and quivers

    • Warriors on right have pointed tiaras and
    • are therefore Skythians.
    • They have (Skythian) axes at their waists
    • Patterned trousers

    • Suggested to be Darius I vs Skythians (6th
    • C – 513-12)
    • After this period the Skythians were no
    • longer enemies of Persia
    • But they might have been made a generic
    • ‘enemy’ by this time
    • A Skythian/Sakae leader is on Bisitun
    • (Skunkha)
    • Herodotos 3.92 has ‘pointed hat men’ for
    • Sakae
    • Herodotos mentions wooden pinakes with Darius’ floating bridge and the Persian army crossing the Bosphoros (4.88.1)

    • Modeled on a famous painting? Unknown if
    • historical or generic scene, though.

    Illustrations of warfare v rare in Achaemenid art.

    • Convoy Scene
    • 19 figures
    • 16 horses
    • 2 chariots
    • Repeated composition: riders and attendants
    • accompany chariots

    • Attendants leading horses: red tiaras and
    • red garments

    Second horse has mane bound in cone shape – custom from Iran and familiar in Anatolian art of Persian era

    • Chariot-rider has sleeved coat – kandys with fur trim? Distinguished with
    • a brown tiara just visible. He is larger, and seated. Spear bearers behind with
    • spears pointed down, also a possible fan in hand of first spearman. Fan-bearing
    • servants on Karabun II symposium scene. High status.

    • Four riders in Median trousers and red
    • tiaras
    • Three attendants follow chariot – no beards
    • or tiaras, long rolled hair – suggests women

    • There are other convoy scenes from the
    • Achaemenid period known from tombs

    • The Munich procession is the longest known
    • One interpretation:
    • Suggested to be an ekphora, with the closed chariot interpreted as a funeral cart.
    • (Sarcophagus would have to be depicted
    • sideways)

    • But then who is the seated dignitary? Is he
    • the deceased, with the closed chest containing grave offerings? Or a successor? Or a priest?

    • Downward lances = grief?
    • Women = lamenting? 

    • Abbreviated versions of this scene contain
    • the closed chariot – suggests it was sufficient for understanding the image’s
    • meaning

    • Two-wheeled vehicles have been found in
    • tombs – perhaps used in funerals and then buried, but still unclear whether
    • they were hearses and how this could have worked if they were: POLYXENA
  1. Tomb painting at Karaburun, Lycia: local lord, c. 470 BC

    • He wears a diadem and jewellery
    • Reclining on a couch
    • Summons two slaves
    • He seems to be on a slightly larger scale than them
    • Shows a desire to be depicted like the great king? Persian influence crept in here?

    In his hand a phiale (shallow bowl). Decorated with floral design? 

    • What
    • does Herodotos say about Lykians?
    • Polyxena Sarcophagus
    • 500BC
    • Found in Gumuşçay, Turkey
    • Situated on large plain near sea

    Late Archaic

    • Two wheels found (remains), probably from
    • the hearse

    Piles of terracotta tiles found piled approx. 1.5m high

    Earliest sarcophagus with figural scenes ever found in Asia Minor.

    Made of white marble

    • Figural reliefs on all 4 sides
    • Lid is ‘gabled’ and imitates tiles
    • Very elaborate cornice

    • Long Side: Sacrifice of Polyxena (daughter of Priam)
    • 12 figures
    • Egg-shaped tomb (of Akhilleus) and tripod (for role of Apollo in Akh’s death)

    • 4 men hold her body (she wears thin chiton
    • and large earrings, they wear light tunics and have tight curls at their hairlines)

    One (Neoptolemus) grips her hair and stabs her neck

    Nestor present? Man with staff, chiton and himation – standard iconography for Nestor (and Priam, but in tradition he dies first)

    • Trojan women mourners – hair tearing,
    • clenched fists, all thin chitons and earrings like Polyxena

    • Second Long Side: Funerary Celebration:
    • 17figures
    • 13 women
    • 4 men

    Gifts, music, dancing

    • Veiled, seated woman, holds a flower and an
    • egg, footstool, and miniature men support her chair

    Nearest figure on left holds a fan and has head uncovered

    Furthest left hold lyre and egg

    • Right-hand women bear gifts: a mirror and
    • bowl of eggs, an alabastron

    Women all wear long chitons

    Right-hand side = music and dancing

    2 female musicians – double flute and khitara

    4 dancing warriors – helmets and round shields, on tiptoe = dancing

    • 4 additional women – one holds castanets,
    • body twists = dancing

    All women wear earrings

    Eggs were common funerary offerings in Greek world

    • Armed dancers and musicians connected to
    • funerals

    Extensive focus on women is striking

    All the power in the Polyxena scene is the men’s

    On the other side the men are just performers to women’s music

    Greek artists from regions under Persian control