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Hermes des Praxiteles

At a later time other statues were dedicated in the Heraion: a marble Hermes carrying the baby Dionysos, the work of Praxiteles, Pausanias

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Hermes and Dionysus of Praxiteles,

copyright ©. Photos : Harry Gouvas http://prevezamuseum.spaces.live.com

Hermes and the “infant” god Dionysus (from Praxiteles around 343-330 BC his only original work survived, there are some who say that it was produced by some of the Praxiteles school ) found the 8th May 1877 at the Hera temple now at the museum of Ancient Olympia. His missing legs below the knee were restored in plaster, also part of his right hand are missing. Hermes and Dionysus are brothers as their father is Zeus. Art Specialists tell us that the face contains an asymmetry. If one looks the face from the left, is sorrowful, from the right it is smiling and seen from the front it is calm. Therefore if we move and look Hermes face it seems not to be static. Made from Parian marble. Praxiteles (390- c.330 BC) lived in Athens about 360 BC, his work is mainly known from Roman copies. Why does the baby Dionysos stretches his hand? Probably because Hermes held a brunch of grapes that Dionysos likes so much.

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Hermes before some missing parts included, Dionysos with a hand not in the current version.

List of Greek and Hellenistic Sculptors

Socrates. I should imagine that the name Hermes has to do with speech, and signifies that he is the interpreter (ermeneus), or messenger, or thief, or liar, or bargainer; all that sort of thing has a great deal to do with language; as I was telling you the word eirein is expressive of the use of speech, and there is an often-recurring Homeric word emesato, which means "he contrived"- out of these two words, eirein and mesasthai, the legislator formed the name of the God who invented language and speech; and we may imagine him dictating to us the use of this name: "O my friends," says he to us, "seeing that he is the contriver of tales or speeches, you may rightly call him Eirhemes." And this has been improved by us, as we think, into Hermes. Iris also appears to have been called from the verb "to tell" (eirein), because she was a messenger. Plato, Cratylus

Hermes / Mercury Gallery

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