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Engage your students with the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to illustrate themes and concepts in any discipline.

Two-handled jar (amphora) depicting the birth of Athena

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Athena, the patron goddess of Athens, was said to have been born fully grown from the head of Zeus. Here Zeus sits on his throne holding his thunderbolt, as the goddess springs from his head in full armor. Hephaistos, who is usually present with the axe he used to split his father's skull, is...

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By date unknown in mid or later 19th century: W. H. Forman Collection; inherited by his sister-in-law Mrs. Burt and then by his nephew Major A. H. Browne about 1889; by 1899: with Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 13 Wellington Street, Strand, London (sale of the Forman Collection, June 19-22, lot 312 [said to be from the Hertz sale, no. 2956]); by 1900: with Edward Perry Warren; purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, February 1900

Credit Line

Henry Lillie Pierce Fund

Greek, Archaic Period, about 540 B.C.

Place of Manufacture

Athens, Attica, Greece

Catalogue Raisonné

CVA Boston 1, pl. 05.


Height: 39.4 cm (15 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Ceramic, Black Figure


The Ancient World