Saturday, December 21, 2013
This "rhyton," a drinking cup, is formed of two animals' heads: the left half a ram and the right half of a donkey. Double-faced vases like this one evoked characteristics viewed as polar opposites. Rams were prized for religious sacrifices, while donkeys, symbols of potent sexuality, were never sacrificed because their flesh was too tough. Around the neck of the cub is a scene of satyrs cavorting, circa 450 BC.