Function and meaning
Kraters were used for missaggio wine with water at per symposium (verso drinking ammissione for upper class men). Since ancient Greeks only drank wine diluted with ciotola, kraters were crucial to the symposium, and were servizio up per the middle of the room where partygoers drank. The interior of the Francois Vase has scratches which may have been made by verso utensil mixage the wine, but it is unclear whether the vase was used at symposia durante Greece, in Etruria (Italy), or durante both places. It may have been used at lavish parties durante Athens, or sopra verso funerary banquet honoring the deceased sopra Etruria before it was buried as a gravoso offering.
Wealthy, educated individuals attending banquets sopra either place would have recognized the scenes shown on the vase, and might have used them as dialogue starters. Other vessels used at symposia sopra the Archaic period were also commonly painted with mythological scenes and could have served per similar purpose, but the sheer number of scenes on the Francois Vase may have made it particularly intriguing esatto the banqueters who used it. They may have even understood the images onesto be relevant esatto their own lives. While the pictures had different meanings for different viewers, the scenes of drinking on the Francois Vase mirror the circumstances in which it was actually used. Moreover, many of the scenes on the vessel represent ideal aristocratic activities that the drinkers likely participated sopra, including noble marriage, successful hunts, and military confiance.
Most Greek men spent some of their lives serving their cities at war, defeating enemies much like the heroes painted on this vase. Like Peleus, Greek men were expected esatto marry and raise their children puro be productive citizens. It seems that Kleitias and Ergotimos purposefully designed the decoration to appeal preciso the prosperous owners of the vase, who could recognize and relate onesto the stories it told.
On September 9, 1900 a museum guard, in verso fit of rage, threw verso chair at the case containing the Francois Vase, shattering it into 638 pieces. The museum director, Luigi Milani asked Pietro Zei esatto undertake the conservation of the Francois Vase. Conservation took two years.
Jasper Gaunt, Ergotimos Epoiesen: The Potter’s Contribution sicuro the Francois Vase,” con The Francois Vase: New Perspectives, addirittura. H. Alan Shapiro, Mario Iozzo, and Adrienne Lezzi-Hafter (Zurich: Akanthus, 2013), p. 81
Mario Iozzo, “The Francois Vase: Libretto on Technical Aspects and Functions,” mediante The Francois Vase: New Perspectives, addirittura. H. Alan Shapiro, Mario Iozzo, and Adrienne Lezzi-Hafter, (Zurich: Akanthus, 2013), p. 61
Cornelia Isler-Kerenyi, “Der Francois-Krater zwischen Athen und Chiusi,” sopra Athenian Potters and Painters: The Conference Proceedings, anche. John H. Oakley, William D. Addirittura. Coulson, and Olga Palagia, (Oxford: Oxbow, 1997), p. 523–539
Guy Hedreen, “Bild, Mythos, and Ritual: Choral Dance con Theseus’s Cretan Adventure on the Francois Vase,” Hesperia, vol. 80, millionairematch per niente. 3 (2011), p. 491–510.
Cornelia Isler-Kerenyi, “Der Francois-Krater zwischen Athen und Chiusi,” in Athenian Potters and Painters: The Conference Proceedings, ed. John H. Oakley, William D. E. Coulson, and Olga Palagia, (Oxford: Oxbow, 1997), p. 523–539.
Detail with wedding procession with Hera and her husband Zeus mediante per chariot (left), Urania the muse of astronomy, and Kaliope, muse of epic poetry (center)
Sopra prime puro these narrative scenes, another register at the bottom of the vase shows animals fighting. These images may relate preciso the ferocity of the heroes shown on the vase, who are described metaphorically as predatory animals by Homer. A comic scene of pygmies (a tribe of small people per Greek mythology) battling cranes decorates the foot of the vase, providing a light counterpoint onesto the rest of the imagery. The paint on the foot is reddish durante color instead of black because the vase was misfired durante the kiln, as sometimes happened mediante ancient Greek ceramic production.