Pausanias, Description of Greece, 5.19.2

μονομαχοῦντος δὲ Αἴαντι Ἕκτορος κατὰ τὴν πρόκλησιν, μεταξὺ ἕστηκεν αὐτῶν Ἔρις αἰσχίστη τὸ εἶδος ἐοικυῖα: πρὸς δὲ ταύτῃ καὶ Καλλιφῶν Σάμιος ἐν Ἀρτέμιδος ἱερῷ τῆς Ἐφεσίας ἐποίησεν Ἔριν, τὴν μάχην γράψας τὴν ἐπὶ ταῖς ναυσὶν Ἑλλήνων.

Ajax is fighting a duel with Hector, according to the challenge, and between the pair stands Strife in the form of a most repulsive woman. Another figure of Strife is in the sanctuary of Ephesian Artemis; Calliphon of Samos included it in his picture of the battle at the ships of the Greeks. (trans. : Jones 1926)

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Ajax combat en duel contre Hector, conformément au défi, et entre eux deux se dresse la Discorde sous l'aspect d'une femme hideuse. Kalliphon de Samos la représenta sous le même aspect au temple d'Artémis d'Éphèse, dans une peinture dont le sujet était la Bataille auprès des navires. (Trad. Reinach 1921 modifiée).

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Commentary

On the Battle at the ships of the Greeks by Kalliphon of Samos (7th or 6th Century BC).

  1. We know very little about Pausanias. According to several modern scholars as well as references within his books of "Description of Greece", Pausanias was born around 115 AD, in Lydia, possibly in the city Magnesia near Mount Sypilus. The " Description of Greece" (Periegesis Hellados) was written within a period of about twenty years (between ca. 155/60 to 175/80 AD). The ten books aim to recorded "what is the most memorable".In other words Pausanias wants to reported all the things that have been heard or written (logoi) and everything worth seeing (théôrèmata) concerning mainland Greece. Thus, Pausanias wanted his books to be at the same time entertaining and instructive. But, the purpose was ambiguous and Pausanias did not enjoy a large audience in Antiquity (Habicht 1985, pp. 1-27 and pp. 117-164; Pouilloux 1992, pp. I-XXIX; Arafat 2004, pp. 8-36; on the cultural context of the Periegesis see: Lafond 2001; on the manuscript tradition: Casevitz 1992, pp. XXXI-XLVI, esp. pp. XXXI-XXIV).

  2. The text is taken from the description of the Kypselos' chest (Paus. V, 17.5-19.10). While describing a scene representing Ajax and Hector combating on either side of Eris (the personification of Strife; on the duel between Ajax and Hector see: Iliad, 7. 225-276), Pausanias introduces the name of Kalliphon of Samos, probably a 7th or 6th Century BC painter (see Lippold, RE 10.2 (1919) col. 1656 s.v. “Kalliphon 5”). This painter, only known by Pausanias account, is also quote in texts 76a and 107a (Polygnotos' painting at the Cnidian Lesche). On both the Kypselos' chest and on Kalliphon of Samos' painting, Eris was pictured as an ugly woman (LIMC III s.v. Eris 2; Eris 3).The only picture known of Eris during the archaic period can be seen on a black-figure cup dated ca. 560-550 BC (Berlin, Staatlichesmuseen F1775; LIMC III s.v. Eris 1); Eris is figured as a running winged figure (Giroux, LIMC III s.v. Eris, p. 846-850; Jacquemin 1999, p. 222).

  3. In Pausanias' time, the Artemis temple at Ephesus was a Hellenistic building. The archaic temple was burnt the 21th of July 356 BC. It is possible that Kalliphon's paintings had been destroyed during the fire. Also, a preceding fire had occurred in 395 BC. So, Pausanias probably never saw the paintings, conveying only what he knows about them (Bammer 1984; Jenkins 2006, pp. 47-70; on Pausanias and archaic times: Arafat 2004, pp. 43-79).

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Bibliography

Lexicon iconographicum mythologiae classicae (LIMC), 1981-2009, 8 vol. suppl., Zürich: Artemis Verlag.

Arafat, K.W., 2004. Pausanias’ Greece: ancient artists and Roman rulers 1st pbk. ed.., New York: Cambridge University Press.

Bammer, A., 1984. Das Heiligtum der Artemis von Ephesos, Graz: Akademische Druck-Verlagsanstalt.

Habicht, C., 1985. Pausanias’ Guide to ancient Greece, Berkeley: University of California Press.

Jenkins, I., 2006. Greek Architecture and Its Sculpture, Harvard University Press.

Lafond, Y., 2001. Lire Pausanias à l’époque des Antonins. Réfléxions sur la place de la Périégèse dans l’histoire culturelle , religieuse et sociale de la Grèce romaine. In D. Knoepfler & M. Piérart, eds. Éditer, traduire, commenter Pausanias en l’an 2000. Actes du colloque de Neuchâtel et de Fribourg (18-22 septembre 1998), autour de deux éditions en cours de la Périégèse (Coll. des Universités de France- Fondazione Lorenzo Valla). Genève: Droz, pp. 387–406.

Pausanias, 1992. Description de la Grèce, tome I: introduction générale. Livre I: l'Attique. texte établi par M. Casevitz, traduit par J. Pouilloux et commenté par F. Chamoux, Paris: Les Belles Lettres.

Pausanias, 1999. Description de la Grèce, Tome V: Livre V, L'Élide 1. Texte établi par M. Casevitz, traduit par J. Pouilloux et commenté par A. Jacquemin, Paris: Les Belles Lettres.

Pausanias, 1926. Description of Greece, Volume II: Books 3-5 (Laconia, Messenia, Elis 1). Translated by W. H. S. Jones, H. A. Ormerod. Loeb Classical Library 188. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

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Created by Valérie Toillon