Corinthian Aryballos with Hunting Scene


A first-rate example of a Corinthian terracotta aryballos decorated with two layers of animal friezes and some geometric and floral pattern. The piece has a long rounded body that extends downwards into a narrow, flat base, and upwards into a narrow neck and wide, protruding rim. A small handle is attached to this flat area. The animals can be determined as a mixture of hunting animals, including canines, cows, goats, and birds. They are painted in black paint, between and behind them are singular flower designs. The upper part of the body as well as the rim is decorated in a geometric spoke pattern.

Date: Circa late 7th Century-6th Century B.C.
Provenance: Anonymous sale; Christie's, London, 13 April 1984, lot 151.
Condition: Very fine condition. Some paint loss visible.


The aryballos was another type of oil flask, although the term is a modern label for the shape. In antiquity it would have been known by other names also, such as lekythos. The shape was popular in Corinth, from which it originated, but use spread throughout Ancient Greece. It was used extensively by athletes, carried at the waist to transport oil for the gymnasium.

Weight 146.8 g
Dimensions W 4 x H 7 cm

Pottery and Porcelain