Terracotta hydria (water jar)

Attributed to the Hesperides Painter

Period: Classical

Date: early 4th century B.C.

Culture: Greek, Attic

Medium: Terracotta; red-figure

Dimensions: H. 18 in. (45.7 cm)
diameter 11 1/8 in. (28.3 cm)

Classification: Vases

Credit Line: Fletcher Fund, 1924

Accession Number: 24.97.5


A major labor of Herakles was to bring to Mycenae the golden apples of the Garden of the Hesperides, which lay far to the west and which was guarded by the serpent Ladon. In the usual account, Herakles kills Ladon and takes the apples. However, in the scene on this hydria, the Garden of the Hesperides appears to have become a sanctuary of Dionysos, and Pan, part goat and part man, observes the affair.