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Pyxis (Container for Personal Objects)

A work made of terracotta.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of terracotta.


730-720 BCE


Greek; Athens

About this artwork

Ceramic vessels decorated with repetitive linear designs were so popular during the 8th and 7th centuries BC that the term Geometric applies to both the style and the time period (800–600 BC). The body of this container is decorated with popular ornamentations, among them Greek key pattern, or meanders, as well as checkerboard patterns, dotted and crosshatched lozenges, and chevrons.

The handle of this vase takes the form of horses standing side by side, suggesting a team for a four-horse chariot. Ownership of horses was an important indicator of financial status, since only the wealthy could afford to possess and train them.


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Arts of the Ancient Mediterranean and Byzantium


Ancient Greek


Pyxis (Container for Personal Objects)


Athens (Object made in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

730 BCE–720 BCE




25 × 33 × 33.3 cm (9 7/8 × 13 × 13 1/8 in.)

Credit Line

Costa A. Pandaleon Greek Art Memorial Fund

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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