classicalmonuments: Funerary Naiskos of Ari…


Funerary Naiskos of Aristonautes

Kerameikos, Athens

320 BCE

2.48 m

The funerary monument takes the form of a naiskos with a statue inside it and stood near the Dipylon Gate in the Kerameikos, the cemetery of ancient Athens. It was made from Pentelic marble and had a total height of 2.48 m – the statue had a height of 1.55 m. The larger part of the relief survives, though part of the back, the right pilaster, the left foot and part of the base it stood on as well as the majority of the right leg from the upper ankle to the middle of the foot are reconstructions. Both forearms are largely missing, including the hands.

The man in the naiskos wears the armour of a hoplite and is named by an inscription on the architrave. He is Aristonautes, son of Archenautes, from the deme of Halai (Ἀριστοναύτης Ἀρχεναύτο Ἁλαιεύς). Aristonautes stands with his legs apart, taking up the majority of the ground within the naiskos, with his right foot and face turned towards the viewer. The rest of his body is turned to the left, giving the impression of movement. He is about to attack an opponent. Aristonautes wears a short chiton, a breastplate, a chlamys and a helmet. His right arm bears a shield and it is probable that there was a sword in his left hand. The funerary monument is a work of significance for cultural history.