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The Parthenon Frieze. Block W III
The scene is reminiscent of a corresponding one on block XII with the horse in the middle and three figures placed around it, so as to interrupt the forward movement of the procession. A horse, facing left, stands quietly between his rider (4) and the servant (6) who stands facing left, nude and with his legs crossed. He is discussing something with the bearded overseer (5) who stands beside the horse, on his invisible proper right side. The overseer (5) is depicted frontally with head turned back to the right. His right arm is stretched out to the left and he too is either grasping the bridle as does the rider (4) with his left hand or else he is giving a command. He wears a himation which is wrapped around the lower part of his body and left forearm. The rider (4) is depicted frontally, his weight leg the left, his right leg free, and he wears a chlamys and petasos which hang behind him.His head is turned toward the left in a direction opposite to that of his raised arms with which he is either trying to place a band on his horse’s head or to arrange the horse’s bridle. His pose is like that of the figures XVI (30), XII (22) and V (9). H. von Heintze connects the scene with the «passing muster» (dokimasia) , the testing of both horse and rider’s capability. The rendering of the musculature of the bodies of the figures is a marvel; so too that of the proud horse, whose hind legs bespeak a certain nervousness.

Link to
(flash version)
Frieze Side
West Frieze
Subject Category
Acropolis Restoration Service
Pentelic marble
W 4, W 5, W 6
Acropolis Museum
Stone Number