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pers, seems also to point to Phrygia, Several of the gold signets found in if we may accept the ingenious expla- the tombs at Mycenæ show us a style nation of Milchhoefer, who sees in identical with that of the swords ; the scene an act of adoration offered the men on them are armed in the to Cybele, who sits to receive it under same way, and carry the same sorts of her sacred tree, the pine. Cybele is shields. And these signets again lead precisely the deity of the district us to the intaglios of early date which around Mount Sipylus whence Pelops are found in Crete and other Greek was said to have come.
islands as well as at Mycenæ, the pecuBesides what is Phrygian there is liar style of which has offered a basis much which appears to be Hellenic, or to the very remarkable theories reat least proto-Hellenic, in the art of cently put forth by Milchhoefer as to Mycena. The best instance we can the existence of a native and local cite is the wonderful sword-blades style of art in Greece at least as early adorned with scenes inlaid in them, as the twelfth century before the scenes which were concealed by rust Christian era. and oxide from discovery by Dr. These intaglios are cut upon small Schliemann, but afterwards brought stones of lentoid shape, which are to light by the patience and ingenuity pierced with a hole for suspension, and of Kumanudes. The style of the most probably served the owners as seals or remarkable, a hunt of three lions by amulets. They are not found in Asia, a body of warriors armed with shield but frequently in the Greek islands, and spear, is very distinctive. The Crete, Rhodes, Melos, and Cyprus, and proportions of the figures and the sometimes in the mainland of Hellas. general plan are Egyptian. But the Their subjects are distinctive, and it is
has a life which belongs to remarkable that they display but little Greece only: the figures are lithe and Oriental influence; Oriental creatures, in motion, not fixed and mechanical. the lion, the griffin, and the sphinx, And the central touch of the picture, seldom appear on them. Nearly al
man lying stretched under the ways they present to us either animals fierce attack of a lion who turns on of European character, bulls, goats, his pursuers, is a motive for which stags, dogs, and the like, or subjects one might in vain seek a prototype
derived from Indo-European mythoamid all the sculptures of Egypt logy. Among the latter, beings with and Assyria. If in them a man is the head of a horse are conspicuous, defeated by animal or monster, that and Milchhoefer tries with all the animal or monster is an embodiment resources of learning to show that of a demon, and not a mere quadruped. horse-headed monsters belong to the In Egyptian battle-scenes not one of mythology of Greece rather than of the Egyptian soldiers is represented any other country, and to connect as falling ; but the Greeks saw that them with the tales of the Harpies, the fall of a few men while their com- of the Gorgon who gives birth to the rades are victorious is a touch which winged horse Pegasus, and the horseadds pathos and a human interest to headed Demeter worshipped at Phia battle. And it was in virtue of galia and Thelpusa. These gems the keen and true perceptions like this writer considers to be the work of the that Greek art at a later time rose to Pelasgic race in the islands of the so high a level.
Ægean. We regret that we have not
space to give a fuller account of the 1 'Mycenæ,' p. 354.
theories of Milchhoefer. They are the ? ' Anfänge der Kunst in Griechenland,' result of long observation and much 3 This remark is due to Mr. R. S. Poole,
travel, and no mere theories of the who made it in a lecture at the Royal Institu
study. It is probable that he carries tion, 9th Feb. 1886.
them too far, but that he has done No. 323.-VOL. LIV.
much to prove the existence of a very the architectural principles recovered. early indigenous Greek art must be The general arrangement of the palace freely conceded.
was simple : it consisted of two parts, Thus we are able to identify among of which one seems to have been apobjects found at Mycenæ many speci- propriated to the men, the other to the mens of native Greek art, as well as women of the royal race. much work which reveals a Phrygian contained a large forecourt, aŭ, surorigin. A third element at Mycenæ, rounded by colonnades, and a main the Semitic or Phænician, is far less hall or living room, approached from plentifully present. Here and there the forecourt through a vestibule. amid the treasures engraved in Around these two nuclei were grouped • Mycenæ ' we find objects which were smaller rooms, which served as bedcertainly imported from Phænicia. chambers, rooms for storage and the Such is the figure of Aphrodité with a like; one chamber seems clearly to dove resting on her head, and the have been devoted to purposes of gold plate which bears a represen- bathing. Stairs led to an upper story, tation of a temple of the same goddess but this, of course, has entirely disapwith doves seated on it. Through the peared. On the walls of some of the Phænicians, too, must have come the chambers were very interesting retassel made of Egyptian porcelain, mains of patterns wherewith they had which was found in one tomb. These been painted-patterns imitated from objects prove that Phænician trade Egyptian models, but strangely altered existed at the time of the Pelopid in the copying: in one room kings, but their rarity proves that fragments of a course of alabaster Phænician commerce had not yet carved in patterns, which had been reached the fulness of development varied and adorned with fragments of which belonged to it at a later time. blue glass let into it at intervals ; a In the Mycenæan age the Greeks could course which has generally been rehold their own against any people, garded as an instance of what is except perhaps the Egyptians, in the termed in the Homeric poems Opuykòs richness and beauty of their handi- κυάνοιο. . work. Nor do the few Phoenician In the general arrangements of the productions from Mycenæ show any forecourt and men's hall, the position of that elaboration of design and com- of the hearth and the altar of Zeus plication of scene which belongs to the Herceius, and in many other respects, Phænician art of the eighth and suc- the palace which existed at Tiryns ceeding centuries.
seems to have been exactly like the The excavations carried on during palaces of which Homer was thinking. the last few years by Dr. Schliemann Only in one point does a notable diverat Tiryns carry us back to the same gence seem to exist. In the Tirynthian .age as those at Mycenæ. But the palace the women's apartments were, point of interest is quite different at as we have said, apart from the men's, the two places. At Mycenæ we have whereas it seems that in the palace a revelation of Greek prehistoric art; of Odysseus at Ithaca the women's at Tiryns we come within sight of the rooms were close to or behind those details and arrangement of a Greek of the men; from many passages it palace of prehistoric times. We now appears that access from the one know why the walls of Tiryns, which set to the other was easy and immein their massive solidity have been a diate. If we may suppose that at wonder to travellers of all ages, were Tiryns an oρσοθύρη, Or door raised built so high and so thick. We know above the floor, existed for communicathat they inclosed and protected a tion between the two sets of a partsplendid royal palace, of which the ments, this difficulty will be removed ; ground-plan can still be traced and and there is nothing whatever in the remains discovered which is inconsist- rise of the Homeric and Hesiodic ent with such a supposition. If one schools of poetry, which fixed for all peruses the Homeric passages which time the main outlines of Greek mydescribe the construction and arrange- thology and the Greek language. ment of the palaces of the Achæan It is not a little remarkable that in kings with the plan of the Tirynthian the archæological record of Greece palace before one, the coincidences there is a gap which closely correbetween the two are so many and sponds to the gap in Greek history. so striking as to show that these The objects found at Mycenæ, and palaces must belong to the same race the kindred objects found in the exand the same age.
In some respects cavations at Sparta and Menidi, as to the plan of the palace at Tiryns fits the which our limits forbid us to speak, Homeric narrative better than even belong to the time before the Dorian the fancy plans which commentators invasion. We have scarcely any rehad made with the sole object of mains which can be given to the next fitting it.
three centuries. We can scarcely supThose who have studied the early pose that the Greeks suddenly lost history of Greece are aware that it the power of producing utensils and offers an extraordinary gap between works of art; the productive arts the supposed time of the Dorian con- must have been in use, in however quest of Peloponnesus and the first degraded a form. But it is probable Olympiad. The date of the Dorian in
enough that the Dorians were slow in vasion according to the received reckon- acquiring the use of the arts, not ing is 1104 B.C.; the Olympiads begin being naturally æsthetic. And it may in 776 B.C. We have thus a period be that the conquered Ionians and of three centuries and a quarter which Achæans had small chance, amid their is almost an absolute blank as regards struggles for bare existence, to conevents of which we have any know- tinue or develop their artistic activity. ledge. Yet the state of Greece as So while it is possible that carefully represented in the mythic legends so conducted excavations amid the ruins entirely differs from the state of of the cities of Æolis and Ionia might Greece as it appears in the dawning bring to light the traces of an art of history, that we are compelled to
one side to the art of believe that there is a gap of time Mycenæ, and on the other side to the between. This gap is supposed to be art of historical Greece, yet it will filled with obscure events and in- scarcely be wonderful if that art, glorious names. It is supposed that when discovered, disappoints us by its exhausted Greece was in those centu- meagreness and want of energy. But ries recovering from the benumbing of course this is a question to which effects of the Dorian conquest, and the final answer can only come from rising by slow degrees to the height the spade. of civilisation from which she had It is in the eighth century before fallen during the wandering of the the Christian era that Greek history, tribes. But it would appear that this
and indeed the history of Europe, may blank space of time held the seeds be said to begin. The eighth century of the rapid development of after witnessed the colonising of Sicily and ages.
then that wealthy lower Italy by Greeks, and the rapid and prosperous Greek colonies grew spread of Milesian trading stations in up along the whole Asiatic coast, and the Euxine, the conquest of the MesCuma
the first outpost senians by Sparta, the rise of lyric of Hellas towards the west. Into poetry, and the establishment of the this period falls the legislation of Olympic festival, to be for a thousand Lycurgus, which laid the foundation years a tie to bind Hellas together. of the greatness of Sparta, and the And the eighth century saw a revival
of art, which had its origin in the Other metal bowls of silver and East and thence spread over
the bronze, which are also ascribed to islands of Greece into the mainland. Phænician workshops, have been found The spread of the use of writing, and in various countries of the Mediterthe gradual introduction of coins, ranean, more particularly in Etruria accompany henceforth the slow de
and Cyprus. These bowls have been velopment of sculpture out of mere repeatedly published ? and discussed. decoration; so that at any later time Their most remarkable characteristic we have means for assigning a date lies in the way in which they combine within fairly narrow limits to any the representations of Egyptian and objects of Greek art which we may Assyrian art. In alternate bands, find.
sometimes in alternate groups of the We must very briefly follow this same band, we may discern, mingled new wave of art which passed west- together, Egyptian kings slaying their ward from Phænicia along the shores foes, Assyrian monarchs hunting lions, of the Mediterranean. Especially in the scarabæus of Egypt, the sacred the case of two materials, metal and tree of Assyria, scenes of ritual such as pottery, we can trace stage by stage figure on the walls of Egyptian tombs, the spreading influence. Let us begin and incidents of court life such as we with metal-work. In one of the
see depicted on the walls of the palaces of Nimroud excavated by Sir palaces of Nimroud. These vessels of H. Layard there were found a number thoroughly eclectic or mixed art belong of bowls of bronze, with designs of to a later period than the vases of repoussé work, which now form a Nimroud, which show Egyptian influchief ornament of the Assyrian gal- ence only. They must belong to the leries of the British Museum. The seventh and the sixth centuries before palace in which they lay was not the Christian era ; and this date will built by King Sargon, but he is well suit the objects found with them believed to have used it. And as the in Cyprus and in Etruria. bowls in question do not exhibit the There can be no doubt that works style which we recognise as Assyrian, in metal so finished and effective as but are, on the contrary, of distinctly these engraved Phænician bowls must Egyptian type, it seems clear that have had great influence in Greece they were importations from abroad. and Italy, more especially because It is regarded by archæologists as they came at a time when the old art almost certain that they were some of Greece was nearly extinct, and no of the spoils brought home by Sargon new art had arisen yet to take its in the course of his conquest of place. In Etruria we find careful and Phænicia about B.c. 720. These vases well-executed copies of some of the then give us a view of the art of more usual and mechanical designs on Phænicia at that time. We cannot these bowls. We might have imahere give any detailed description of gined that the importation of works them ;1 it must suffice to say that so complete into Greece would have they show throughout an intelligent produced in that land also mere appreciation of the ideas and customs imitations more or less perfect. But of Egyptian art, but in imitating that careful copying did not suit the Greek art they adapt; they add, perhaps, nature. Hellenic artists were at all more than they lose in copying. But periods original and productive. So they introduce few forms and ideas though Phænician metal-work stimuforeign to the art of Egypt. Baby- lated them into activity, the line taken lonia and Assyria contribute nothing by that activity was original and distinctive to them.
L. P. di Cesnola, Cyprus,'pl. xix. Perrot 1 Layard, 'Nineveh,' second series. Perrot et Chipiez, Hist. de l'Art,' vol. iii. pp. 759. et Chipiez, ‘Hist. de l'Art,' vol. ii. pp. 736, &c. 769, 779, &c.
national. What it was will more admirable. A demand arose for someclearly appear if we consider the thing containing more of human inhistory of the decoration of pottery at terest. And the Greek potters met the same period.
the demand not by copying on their The spreading Oriental influence of
some of the more elaborate which we have spoken may be traced scenes of cult or of court life, such less clearly in those vases of Cyprus as they must have seen on the eclectic which were probably executed by metal vessels of Phænicia, but by Phænician hands than in the pottery introducing something of their own, discovered at Camirus, in Rhodes, in some scene out of Greek legend or such quantities by Salzmann and mythology.
see illustraBiliotti.1 The designs of these re- tions of Greek myths gradually make markable vessels show us in many their way on the decorative Oriental points influences which must be Orien- pottery, and by degrees claim the first tal. The rows of animals which place, driving into a corner the foreign surround the vases in bands, each elements, until the friezes of animals, animal in exactly the same attitude which used to cover the whole surface as the other, show close analogy to of the vases, remain only in a narrow the Phænician bowls of Nimroud. band above and below the mythologiAmong these animals those predomi- cal scene which has now occupied the nate of which the Eastern origin is post of honour, which it is never again clear, the lion, the sphinx, the griffin, to lose until Greek art is in its dotage. and many other winged monsters such A good illustration alike of the Orias the Asiatic brain often produces. ental setting of early Greek art and The field of the vases is filled with its aggressive attempt at originality floral ornaments and rosettes, which will be found in that remarkable is a mark of Assyrian influence. And archaic bronze plate found at Olympia, in the decoration of the vases two where a combat between Herakles forms predominate, the lotus, alter- and a Centaur appears as a proof of nately flower and bud, which belongs Hellenic workmanship among animals to Egypt, and the sacred tree which and monsters of purely Asiatic chais a distinguishing feature of Assyrian racter. decoration.
The colouring of these vases is rich, Having thus brought down the and they are beautiful with a certain archæological record of Greece to the mechanical completeness. In their seventh century, after which time we way they are specimens of very suc- emerge into the full light of history, cessful decoration, and we cannot let us retrace our steps. Let us take wonder that they fascinated the up the problem at the other end; and Greeks of the seventh century. That briefly consider what account is given the Greeks fully adopted this kind of in the Homeric poems themselves of vase painting, whencesoever it came the state of contemporary art ; and of to them originally, has been of late those details of dress, armour, and the abundantly proved by the discoveries like of which we find in works of art at Naucratis in Egypt, where an a full and satisfactory representation. enormous quantity of pottery of the Such a discussion will, we believe, class has been discovered, dating firmly establish the conclusion that the doubtless from near the time of the Homeric poems were written at a time foundation of Naucratis in the seventh of decadence of art, when the light century before the Christian era. But which shines so clearly at Mycenæ Greek art soon became a thing too had faded away, and the new remuch alive to be confined in the vival had not yet made its start from dimits of any decoration, however the East, or at most had but recently 1 Nécropole de Camiros.'
begun its career of conquest.