Youth Riding a Rooster (Epiktetos)

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Youth Riding a Rooster

Youth Riding a Rooster is a red-figure plate painted by Epiktetos about 520–510 BC. Its diameter measures 7 3/8 in. (18.7 cm). The plate is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. It shows a boy riding a rooster. It was a rare subject among ancient artists. It probably references homosexual relations between older men and youths. It also references the practice among Greek males of giving a rooster as a love gift.

The vase scholar Sir John Beazley wrote in 1918 in Attic Red-Figured Vases in American Museums (p. 18): "The best of [Epiktetos] is in his plates. You cannot draw better, you can only draw differently. Epiktetos' people are all lightness and fairy grace, as if they belonged to a world where passion and pain were unknown, to those 'woods of Athens' where Oberon reigned in the days before 'the middle summer's spring'".

The plate was discovered in Vulci in 1828. Twenty years later it became the possession of the second marquess of Northampton. On July 2, 1980, his great-great-grandson, the seventh marquess, sold it with other pottery at Christie's in London.

References[change | change source]

  • Boy and Rooster, Metropolitan Museum of Art, retrieved July 20, 2012

Other websites[change | change source]

  • Media related to Epiktetos at Wikimedia Commons