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Horse of Selene - Item #69

$ 960.00



24 Inches High x 33 Inches Wide x 11 Inches Deep

The Parthenon, a temple dedicated to the goddess Athena, is an astounding example of Classical Greek architecture and art. It was built by the architects Ictinus and Callicrates while the supervisor, and also the artistic director, for the project was the sculptor Phidias. Situated on the Acropolis in Athens, the Parthenon, at its prime, was a temple of white marble with countless colorful sculptures. Today, it is partially in ruins. The pediments, which are architectural elements similar to gables, were the last areas of the Parthenon to receive decoration.

This horse sculpture is one of the horses of Selene, the moon goddess. Selene and the god of the sun, Helios, are shown driving their chariots in opposite corners of the east pediment, the pediment that illustrated the birth of Athena from Zeus's head. Reconstructions of the pediment reveal that only the top portions of the gods and horses were visible as these scenes were designed to fit into the tight corners of the pediment. As Helios brings about the day, his horses are full of energy, aiming upward. Selene's horses, like this one, are exhausted, panting as they complete their night ride. One can see the tension in the features and muscles of this horse's face. The holes in the sculpture were once used for the attachment of a metal bridle and of metal ornament to the mane. This horse is in the collection of the British Museum, as are a pair of Helios's horses and what remains of Helios. Selene's torso, two of her horses, and the other pair of Helios's horses can be found in the Acropolis Museum.


Artist: Unknown

Museum: British Museum, London

Origin: The Parthenon - East Pediment, Athens

Time Period: Ancient Greek, 437-432 B.C.E.

1911 Catalog ID # - 548



"Head of a horse of Selene from the east pediment of the Parthenon 438 BC - 432 BC." The British Museum in the Google Cultural Institute,

“Parthenon.” Wikipedia,

"Parthenon East Pediment (Sculpture)." Perseus Digital Library. Editor-in-Chief Gregory R. Crane. Tufts University,

“The Parthenon Sculptures.” Museum number 1816,0610.98.​The British Museum,​

“The Pediments.” Acropolis Museum,