Greek Terracotta Antefix: Maenad

 

Greek Terracotta Antefix: Maenad

A large ancient Greek terracotta antefix with the bust of a Maenad, her unruly hair bound in a topknot.

Metapontium, Lucania, Southern Italy.
Ca. 330-320 BC.
Height: 8 in. (20.4 cm).
Intact.

Antefixes were ornamental pottery caps that covered the open ends left by semi-cylindrical tiles at the edge of a temple roofs. They were often adorned with apotropaic images like Gorgons and Satyrs.

Maenads (also Bacchantes) were the frenzied female members of the retinue of Dionysus, the Greek god of wine and revelry (Roman: Bacchus). Maenads, literally "the raving ones," were often depicted in Greek art as wild and ecstatic women who indulged in sex, violence, and intoxication.

Formerly in the S. G. collection, New York; previously in the C. collection, Switzerland, 1960's.

Inv#: 6071

$8,500

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