The original drinking cup (kylix), dating to the mid 6th century BC, is in the Munich Antikensammlungen and is the work of Exekias.

Dionysos, god of wine and drama, was sailing to Naxos and had hired some Tyrrhenian pirates to take him there. However, the pirates headed for Asia, intending to sell their passenger as a slave. Dionysos retaliated by turning their oars into serpents and by making a vine sprout from the sail and by filling the whole ship with tenacious ivy. Eventually, the pirates threw themselves overboard and became dolphins. This story is told in a Homeric Hymn.

Along with the Amasis Painter, the Athenian Exekias was a pioneer and master of the black-figure technique of vase-painting in the 6th century BC.

This is a lovely image of the god at ease, triumphant after outwitting the pirates. It differs from the original (shown below) in that there is no exterior decoration on the underside.

image of the original Exekias kylix in Munich depicting Dionysos at sea


dimensions etc Diameter of bowl: 22cm Height: 9cm Width including handles: 28cm

black-figure kylix - Dionysos at sea (large)

  • Code: VM-38
  • Status: In Stock
  • £135.00

  • excl tax: £112.50