« AnteriorContinuar »
of the central entrance, and in this rough wall at Mushennef is an ornamental lintel, which from its size and style of ornament a meander, like that of the architrave — would seem to have been the top of one of these rectangular niches. As for the curved niche, no parts remain, and it has been entirely assumed from examples at the North Temple at 'Atîl and elsewhere. The arch over the doorway is a common expedient in Syria, both for admitting light and for discharging the pressure from the flat lintel, and therefore this feature has been included.2 The peribolos of the temple (PLATE III) is paved with flat stones of various sizes, smoothly cut and squared, and is surrounded by a colonnade and a temenos wall except behind the temple, where the colonnade is omitted (PLATE I). One column is still standing to the height of the necking, and shows a considerable entasis. Near it lies its capital of the Corinthian order, while in the rough front wall of the temple itself is a piece of an architrave which, from its rougher workmanship, and its inscription of the time of Alexander Severus (222-235 A.D.),3 would seem to have been part of the architrave of this colonnade, which is thus shown to have been of later date than the temple. Portions of the temenos wall are also in situ, and are of cut stones smoothed on all their faces, except in some of the lower stages along the shore of the little reservoir (birkeh) behind the temple, where there are some rusticated blocks (PLATE IV). This may be due to the fact that the wall was first built under Agrippa I, and then rebuilt at a later date, as stated earlier in this article.
The whole temple is built of black basalt in blocks of various sizes, and often of different heights, but finely cut and laid without mortar. All the ornaments are beautifully carved, and the mouldings are well defined. Altogether it is a very good example of the architecture of the Roman period in Syria during the second century of our era.
1 Butler, op. cit. p. 346.
2 E.g. Kaişiriyeh at Shaķķā, De Vogüé, op. cit. Pl. 9; Butler, op. cit. p. 371, and the Praetorium at Mousmyeh, G. Rey, Voyage dans le Haouran, Pl. 3.
3 Prentice, op. cit. No. 382.
THE TECHNICAL HISTORY OF WHITE LECYTHI
THERE is need of a scientific classification of white lecythi by shape, ornament, technique, and historical sequence of style. M. Pottier, in his Étude sur les lécythes blancs attiques, pp. 91 ff., especially p. 103, and Professor Furtwängler, in his Beschreibung der Vasensammlung im Antiquarium zu Berlin, have attempted the task; but the material at Athens, at the time of his writing, was inadequate for the one,1 and the other based his very careful study on the limited collection in Berlin. M. Pottier remarks truly (p. 4) that Athens is the only place where a detailed study can be made. Many finds in Greece and many special articles have paved the way for a comprehensive survey.2 The essential distinction to be made in such classification is between lecythi with designs in glaze paint and those in dull (matt) colors. The latter alone deserve the name of polychrome lecythi, though both classes are Attic. In the former class one must distinguish those vases with black glaze from those, more numerous and later, with a yellowish wash color. It was to the use of this wash that the first success of the white lecythi was due, and it led the way to the polychrome style with dull colors. These "golden glaze" lecythi, recently found
1 E.g., the "golden glaze" class has largely increased even since Mr. Bosanquet wrote of them, J.H.S. 1899, p. 180.
2 Bibliography in Pottier, pp. 3 f. See also the works cited in this article. 3 The failure to make this a primal distinction is the cause of much useless de'scription in catalogues; e.g. British Museum, No. D 51, is said to have brown outlines, but brown wash for the hair; whence one might suppose the former was in dull paint, the other in glaze. Both are in wash of the glaze. Again, in the account of No. D 57 the opposite blunder is made, - the outline is called brown glaze, the hair simple brown, though both are exactly the same,
4 Formerly only the lecythi with dull colors were called Attic. American Journal of Archaeology, Second Series. Journal of the Archaeological Institute of America, Vol. XI (1907), No. 1.
wash color. Pottier, p. 4. 7
in large numbers, deserve notice in a separate class because they bridge over the period (ca. 470-440 B.C.) between the severe red-figured vases and the later free style.
The matter of chronological sequence is also an important question that has not been adequately treated. Some lecythi are still loosely assigned to the fourth century B.C., as many red-figured vases used to be, whereas there is strong reason for believing that practically all the white lecythi belong to the fifth. I have important evidence on this point in the case of a lecythus found on the island of Rhenea. Apart from such external proof as fixes the date of the lecythus from Rhenea, internal proof is derived from the comparative study of artistic style in the last half of the fifth century; whereby Professor Furtwängler (Griech. Vasenmalerei, p. 39) was led to date the Meidias vase about 430 B.C., instead of in the fourth century.3
It may be safely asserted that the dates generally assigned are from a score of years to a half century too late. However, as each style was invented, the old did not die out. The quality deteriorated; the class continued for a long time. A poor lecythus, made for the trade, cannot be dated accurately, since cheap productions of an older type long remained beside the newer styles.
The importance of the ornament (the form of the palmettes on the shoulder and the meander) and shape, as well as that of the technique, has not been recognized sufficiently. Rarely in Greek art does one find more experiment in detail than in the development of the lecythi, though they have been thought of as simple, conventional products by those who have seen only a few late and poor specimens in dull colors. These details alone 1 See Pottier, p. 2, for the earlier view.
2 Cf. infra, p. 32, Group C.
3 The analogies with sculpture, and sequence within the classes, are as useful for the chronology of the lecythi, as they have proved for that of the redfigured vases. Cf. infra, p. 35 n. 6.
+ The various publications have not been of much aid to me in the matter of ornament, since their general descriptions are as vague as their accounts of the kind of color. Cf. supra, p. 7 n. 3. Only a study of the originals could assure me of the proper classification. My examples are almost entirely confined to the vases I have seen. It was by the kind permission of the American School at Athens that I was enabled to study the lecythi in the European museums during my year as Fellow of the School.