Terracotta funerary plaque

Period: Archaic

Date: ca. 520–510 B.C.

Culture: Greek, Attic

Medium: Terracotta; black-figure

Dimensions: Overall: 10 1/4 x 14 1/4 x 3/8 in. (26 x 36.2 x 0.9 cm)

Classification: Terracottas

Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1954

Accession Number: 54.11.5


In the latter sixth century B.C., the elaborate series of funerary plaques set into the walls of rectangular tombs were replaced by single plaques with holes for attachment. The chariot race, a recurring theme in Attic funerary art, may evoke the funeral games held in honor of legendary heroes, such as those in book 23 of the Iliad, when Achilles honored his deceased friend Patroklos.