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Lykosoura Drapery Fragment
ca. 200 BCE
2nd century BCE
50 x 20.38 x 12.63 in. (127 x 51.75 x 32.07 cm)
Medium and Support:
Gift of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2004
Not on view.
This cast of a section of drapery is part of an original sculpture called the Colossal Cult Statue Group by Damophon at Lykosoura. In its original form, the sculpture included the two goddesses Despoina and Demeter who sat on a throne flanked by Anytos and Artemis. Behind them was a large altar that had two triton statues as legs. The section shown here is the drapery that would have decorated the altar where animal sacrifices were made to honor Despoina, the patron deity of the local people of Lykosoura. Originally this sculpture was located in the middle of the Temple of Despoina.
The sculpture, created in the 2nd century BCE during the Hellenistic period of Greece, depicts the myth of Despoina and Demeter. The sculptor Damophon was renowned for creating sculptures associated with cult and myth. This kind of representation can be seen in the drapery cast in the collection at Fairfield University. Visual references are made to characters involved in the myth of Despoina and Demeter, such as Poseidon and Zeus. They are represented with eagles and tritons which would have been easily recognized by the people of that time period.
Current location of marble original: National Archaeological Museum, Athens (No. 1737)