CHAPTER VIII
SCULPTURE AND HISTORY

SCULPTURE in relation to history may be considered in two very different ways: first we may inquire how the actual political history of Greece is reflected in the productions of the sculptor; second, how the course of sculpture runs parallel to the history of the Greek spirit in other fields of activity.

It might be supposed that the idealizing tendency of Greek art would make it unsuitable for recording actual facts of history -- the details of a battle, the circumstances of a civic success, and the like. There is some justification for this view, but it must not be expressed in too absolute a way. The walls of Greek stoae abounded in representations which were in intention historic. Micon, or Panaenus, painted in a stoa at Athens a representation of the battle of Marathon, and Euphranor painted the cavalry battle at Mantinea in which Epaminondas took part. Our knowledge, however, of surviving Greek monuments forbids us to think that these would be realistic representations of "the delights and the horrors of war."

In the friezes of the beautiful Ionic monument of Xanthus, the so-called Nereid monument, brought to the British Museum by Sir Charles Fellowes, we find a sculptural record of an actual siege of some unknown city in Lycia or Caria.1 Several scenes are portrayed, -- the assailants advancing against the city and mounting scaling ladders to the assault, the general of

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1
Mon. d. Inst., X., Pls. 11-18, and the histories of sculpture.

-112-

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