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Book illustration

(776 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] These are hand-painted illustrations in manuscripts of cultic, lexical, geographic (and cartographic), or literary content, which explain the text through images, or supplement or ornament it. Painting techniques range from roughly-sketched pen or brush drawings using drawing ink and/or water-colour up to lavishly coloured pictures in tempera. The term ‘miniature’ for book illustrations derives from the cinnabar (Lat. minium) used in the Middle Ages to emphasize margins and initials. Grounds were raffia,  papyrus, and  parchment. From th…

Ctesidemus

(56 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] Second-rate Greek painter (according to Plin. HN 35,140), who worked around and after 350 BC and was the teacher of  Antiphilus [4]. Extant works are a battle painting, the sack of Oechalia, and a portrait of Laodamia; nothing is known of their style. Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) Bibliography G. Lippold, s.v. Ktesidennos, RE 11, 2077.

Panaenus

(271 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] (Πάναινος/ Pánainos). Painter and sculptor from Athens, brother or more likely nephew (Str. 8,3,30) of the sculptor Phidias, with whom he worked, possibly in the same workshop. His active period was the second third of the 5th cent. BC. Paus. 5,11,4-6 reports that he painted the fence in the temple of Zeus in Olympia with a programmatic cycle of myths. As can be inferred from remains and dowel holes, this fence was made of individual stone slabs, which were set up between the front…

Fresco

(391 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] From Italian fresco, affresco intonaco, ‘on the fresh plaster’. Wall and ceiling paintings, in which the  pigments are applied to a damp base either in pure form or with the aid of a special binder such as diluted glue, casein, or marble powder. The composition of the covering varies; usually, it is a whitewash mortar mixed with different additives which are applied one after the other in several layers. Basically, the fresco technique lies in the fact that during the drying process o…

Alexander Mosaic

(1,219 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] Monumental floor mosaic (5.82 × 3.13 m) representing a battle between the Macedonians and Persians, who were led by Alexander the Great and Darius respectively. Discovered in October 1831 in the ‘Casa del Fauno’ in Pompeii (Regio VI,12; now Naples, MN). The work in opus vermiculatum ( Mosaic), preserved in part only, consists of more than 1.5 million small stones coloured with mineral dye. Large, missing sections filled with stucco, mainly on the left half, and areas patched-up with coarser stones are repairs carried out in …

Mummy portraits

(659 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] Wooden tablets with painted heads or busts of women, men and children. As the topmost, visible layer they were integrated into the casing of a mummy (Mummies ) at the level of the face, where a gap was left for them. Many of the c. 900 known pieces, dating from the birth of Christ to the 3rd cent. AD, come from necropoleis of Fayum, an oasis south-west of Cairo, but they were also found elsewhere along the Nile. MP were discovered by chance at the end of the 19th cent. and soon became desirable objects in the international…

Protogenes

(423 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] (Πρωτογένης; Prōtogénēs). Hellenistic painter and sculptor of bronze statues of athletes and warriors (Plin. HN 34,91; 35,101-106) from Caunus, famous together with other leading masters of the Alexander period as consummate painters (Cic. Brut. 18,70). His creative period, about 330‒290 BC, can only be inferred by combining historical dates and persons from written sources that are often coloured by anecdote ( e.g. Plut. Demetrius 22). Reportedly he only turned to panel painting in advanced age and hence produced only a small oeuvre, havin…

Micon

(368 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] (Μίκων/ Míkōn). Greek painter and sculptor (Plin. HN 34,88) from Athens, active between 475 and 440 BC. He and Polygnotus belonged to the first important generation of the Attic painting school in the early classical period, which broke ground for the development of the great Greek painting. None of the wall paintings in Athens known from numerous written sources of various periods survives, but frequent mention does allow us to infer his great significance. His main patron was Cim…

Triumphal paintings

(513 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] A typically Roman genre, common from the middle of the 3rd cent. BC until the Imperial period, today entirely lost and recorded only in written sources. During the triumphal procession (Triumph) of a victorious general, panel paintings or canvas banners were carried past the crowds and were afterwards publicly exhibited (e.g. Plin. HN 35,22-28; Pol. 6,15,8; Jos. BI 7,3-7; other sources in [4]). Rudiments of the content, appearance and intended effect of such pictures can be recons…

Agatharchus

(254 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] Greek painter from Samos, worked in Athens in the 2nd half of the 5th cent. BC. Ancient sources link A. with chronologically divergent historical events. Vitr. De arch. 7 praef. 11 describes A. in connection with  stage painting as the ‘inventor’ of  perspective in painting and mentions a theoretical work about this. The negative judgement of his contemporary  Zeuxis regarding his hasty painting methods (Plut. Pericles 13), the information that  Alcibiades [2] locked A. in his hou…

Compendiariae

(234 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] (from Lat. pictura compendiaria, an advantageously short way of painting; ‘abbreviated’ painting). Ancient technical term, often translated as ‘quick painting’. The manner, the application and the influence of this Greek painting technique of the late 4th cent. BC is still debated due to the lack of detailed explanations in the sources (esp. in Plin. HN 35, 110; Petron. Sat. 2). The debate includes a number of methods: impressionist ‘paint spot painting’; the use of a kind of sketchi…

Marble, paintings on

(499 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] In Greek and Roman painting, stone, and especially marble, was a popular surface for paintings, as it lent itself to representations with varied functions. Images for the funerary cult, which are mostly badly preserved, existed on marble tombstones in many regions of the Mediterranean area from archaic times into the Hellenistic period. Like the relief stelae which were also painted with colours ( Polychromy), they were erected in necropoleis. Reliefs and painting were also combin…

Mnasitimus

(230 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) | Neudecker, Richard (Rome)
(Μνασίτιμος/ Mnasítimos). [German version] [1] Greek painter from Rhodes, later 3rd cent. BC Greek painter from Rhodes (?) of the later 3rd cent. BC (?), mentioned by Plin. HN 35,146 as a rather second-rate painter. Provenance and date can only be inferred by genealogical conclusions from other artists of this name; nothing is known of his work. Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) Bibliography G. Lippold, s.v. Mnasitimos (1), RE 15, 2256f. [German version] [2] Various sculptors from one Rhodes family, 4th to 2nd cents. BC Various sculptors from one Rhodian family. The reconstructed famil…

Grave paintings

(733 words)

Author(s): Niemeyer, Hans Georg (Hamburg) | Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
[German version] Interior or exterior painting of funerary architecture built from stone or carved into rock existed in antiquity and throughout the entire Mediterranean region, also images on wood and stone steles; sarcophagi rarely bore paintings. Each region and period had its own particular programmes of pictures, which are interpreted as realistic or symbolic, and referring to this or the next world depending on the state of research. Due to the perishable nature of the genre, much has been lost. However, significant new finds have also been made in recent years. Grave paintings …

Timagoras

(184 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) | Schmitz, Winfried (Bielefeld)
(Τιμαγόρας/ Timagóras). [German version] [1] Greek painter and poet from Chalcis, c. 450 BC Greek Classical period painter and poet (?) from Chalcis; known only from Plin. HN 35,58, who gives an account of a painting competition during the Pythian Games in Delphi ( c. 450-440 BC), which T. won against Panaenus. The scale and appearance of his works are unknown. Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) Bibliography N. J. Koch, Techné und Erfindung in der klassischen Malerei, 2000, 229 G. Lippold, s. v. T. (7), RE 6 A, 1074 P. Moreno, s. v. T., EAA 7, 1966, 855. [German version] [2] From Athens, envoy t…

Ecphantus

(364 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) | Frede, Michael (Oxford)
(Ἔκφαντος; Ékphantos). [German version] [1] Greek painter from Corinth, active probably in the mid 7th cent. BC Greek painter from Corinth, active probably in the mid 7th cent. BC. According to Pliny (HN 35,16), he was the founder of the secunda pictura, a style of painting which completely covered all surfaces with paint; an example of this style are the wooden plates handed down from Pitsa. The monochromata mentioned by Pliny in this context may refer to the unbroken and precious mineral pigments that were used. Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) Bibliography N. J. Koch, De picturae initiis, P…

Cimon

(972 words)

Author(s): Stein-Hölkeskamp, Elke (Cologne) | Hoesch, Nicola (Munich)
(Κίμων; Kímōn). [German version] [1] Known as Koálemos, born c. 585 BC, achieved three Olympic victories C., known as Koálemos (‘the Stupid’), son of Stesagoras of Athens, born about 585 BC, had to leave Athens during the tyranny of  Peisistratus. During his exile he achieved two Olympic victories with the four-horse chariot (536 and 532 BC). Since C. had the 2nd victory proclaimed for Peisistratus, he was permitted to return. C.'s high prestige after his third Olympic victory (528) resulted in a conflict between …

Polygnotus

(1,352 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) | Oakley, John H. (Williamsburg, VA)
(Πολύγνωτος; Polýgnōtos). [German version] [1] Greek painter and bronze sculptor Greek painter from Thasos, also bronze sculptor (Plin. HN 34,58), of the early classical period. Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) [German version] I. General His exact dates are unknown; P. worked after the Persian Wars from about 480 until c. 440 BC in Athens and other places in Greece. Because of his ability to translate historical, political and cultural achievements of the Polis into an identifiable pictorial language by means of juxtaposition of mythical and curren…

Cleanthes

(515 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) | Inwood, Brad (Toronto) | Nutton, Vivian (London)
(Κλεάνθης; Kleánthēs). [German version] [1] Painter from Corinth One of the earliest painters from Corinth, mentioned in Plin. HN 35,15f.; his name stands for the origin of the genera ( prima pictura). C. was considered the inventor of line art, creating his work from outlines and filling them in. Stylistic comparisons with vase painting of the early 7th cent. date his work to the same period. Also only known from the literature (Str. 8,343; Athen. 8,346 BC) are his tableaus in a sanctuary near Olympia: the fall of Troy, the birth of Athena, also Poseidon handing Zeus a tuna. Hoesch, Nicola (…

Zeuxis

(1,222 words)

Author(s): Hoesch, Nicola (Munich) | Mehl, Andreas (Halle/Saale) | Touwaide, Alain (Madrid)
(Ζεῦξις/ Zeûxis). [German version] [1] Greek painter and sculptor, c. 435/25-390 BC Greek painter and sculptor, active between c. 435/25 and 390 BC. He was one of the pioneers of the great era of Greek painting which would retain its high standards for over a century. 'Heraclea', which Plin. HN 35,61 gives as his place of origin, seems more likely to be the Sicilian Heraclea [9] Minoa ([1. 382]; but [2]: Heraclea [7] Pontica?) than Heraclea [10] in Lucania [3. 60], since Z. was the pupil of an otherwise unknown ma…
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