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Three Millennia of Greek Literature
 

F. B. Tarbell, A History of Ancient Greek Art

The Great Age of Greek Sculpture. First Period 450-400 B. C.

The Parthenon

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HOMER

PLATO

ARISTOTLE

THE GREEK OLD TESTAMENT (SEPTUAGINT)

THE NEW TESTAMENT

PLOTINUS

DIONYSIUS THE AREOPAGITE

MAXIMUS CONFESSOR

SYMEON THE NEW THEOLOGIAN

CAVAFY

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Page 2

The best preserved metopes of the Parthenon belong to the south side and represent scenes from the contest between Lapiths and Centaurs. These metopes differ markedly in style from one another, and must have been not only executed, but designed, by different hands. One or two of them are spiritless and uninteresting. Others, while fine in their way, show little vehemence of action. (...) Fig. 122 is very different. In this "the Lapith presses forward, advancing his left hand to seize the rearing Centaur by the throat, and forcing him on his haunches; the right arm of the Lapith is drawn back, as if to strike; his right hand, now wanting, probably held a sword. .... The Centaur, rearing up, against his antagonist, tries in vain to pull away the left hand of the Lapith, which, in Carrey's drawing [made in 1674] he grasps."[1] Observe how skilfully the design is adapted to the square field, so as to leave no unpleasant blank spaces, how flowing and free from monotony are the lines of the composition, how effective is the management of the drapery, and, above all, what vigor is displayed in the attitudes. (...) These two metopes and two others, one representing a victorious Centaur prancing in savage glee over the body of his prostrate foe, the other showing a Lapith about to strike a Centaur already wounded in the back, are among the very best works of Greek sculpture preserved to us.

[1] A. H. Smith, "Catalogue of Sculpture in the British Museum," page 136.


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Cf. A probable representation of Parthenon as it was colored  *  Davis' Parthenon

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Reference address : https://www.ellopos.net/elpenor/greek-texts/ancient-greece/history-of-ancient-greek-art-39.asp?pg=2