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Heroes: Mortals and Myths in Ancient Greece

Edited by Sabine Albersmeier
Essays by Michael J. Anderson, Jorge J. Bravo III, Gunnel Ekroth, Guy Hedreen, Ralf von den Hoff, Jennifer Larson, Jenifer Neils, John H. Oakley, Corinne Ondine Pache, and H. A. Shapiro

To contemporary eyes, Greek heroes embody contradiction: they might have superhuman powers, but their mortality was what made them heroic. Many were regarded as benevolent ancestors with powers to protect and heal, but others were dangerous and haunted spirits of the dead, who had to be appeased. Although epic, drama, and the visual arts abound in representations of heroes whose fame has carried over into modern times, cult and funerary architecture commemorate many more individuals whose names and deeds are entirely lost to us.

More than a hundred stunning statues, reliefs, vases, bronzes, coins, and gems drawn from the collection of the Walters Art Museum, as well as other major American and European collections, highlight how heroes were represented, why they were important, and what encouraged individuals to seek them out. Featuring essays by leading authorities in the field, this book draws on recent archaeological, literary, and art historical research to explore such issues as gender, cult, and iconography, as well as overlooked aspects of familiar and unfamiliar heroes.

This publication accompanied an exhibition organized by the Walters Art Museum, October 11, 2009-January 3, 2010, in association with the Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville, the San Diego Museum of Art, and the Onassis Cultural Center, New York.

328 pages
12”h x 10.5”w
Hardcover

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