Parthenon Frieze – West Frieze, Block II
“On the Parthenon Frieze, Pheidias chose to depict the Great Panathenaia, the greatest festival of the city in honour of the Goddess Athena. The festival took place every four years, lasted 12 days and included rituals, sacrifices, as well as athletic and musical contests. The festivities culminated on the 28th day of the month – Hekatombaion in the heart of the summer – on Athena’s birthday. On that day, a procession advanced to the temple of Athena Polias in order to hand over to the priestess a new peplos for the old xoanon of the Goddess. This procession unfolds over the 160 meters of continuous sculptural decoration of the Parthenon frieze.” – The Acropolis Museum
As you look closely you will identify some ‘drill-holes’ in specific places. Some have now been filled over time, however, on this cast you can see they are still present in the horses head on the right. This would be where metal bridle and reins were once inserted (see image below). The original also has holes on the front riders head, most likely where a metal headdress was placed.
We offer a replica cast from the original, which is currently exhibited in The British Museum.