Banquet Relief



Banquet Relief


Relief Sculpture


4th Century BC


Late Classical


Marble, Ephesos 2, Paros 2
22 5/8 x 33 1/8 x 5 5/16 in. (57.5 x 84.2 x 13.5 cm)

Object Number



The afterlife as a banquet, as depicted here, was a popular image in fourth-third century grave-reliefs. The iconography, borrowed in archaic times from the ancient Near East, was based on everyday symposia.

Generic elements in this relief include the deceased, represented as a banqueter (symposiast), who holds out a libation bowl (phiale). His wife sits at the foot of his couch. In front of the couch is a table on which food (perhaps fruit or cakes) has been placed. At left, a serving boy stands beside a volute-krater holding a jug and drinking vessel with long conical body and ram's head end (rhyton). The krater is depicted on a stand, indicating that the artist intended it to be understood as metal. The startling horse's head above the serving boy may have aristocratic associations (horse-breeding and racing was the preserve only of the wealthy); it may also allude to the god of the Underworld, Hades, one of whose cult epithets was hippios (horseman).

Credit Line

Carlos Collection of Ancient Art


MCCM Permanent Collection Reinstallation, September 2004 - Present
MCCM Newsletter, March - May 2000.


© Michael C. Carlos Museum, Emory University. Photo by Bruce M. White, 2004.
This image is provided by the Michael C. Carlos Museum of Emory University, who retains all rights in it. This image is made available for limited non-commercial, educational, and personal use only, or for fair use as defined by United States law. For all other uses, please contact the Michael C. Carlos Museum Office of Collections Services at +1(404) 727-4282 or Users must cite the author and source of the image as they would material from any printed work, but not in any way that implies endorsement of the user or the user's use of the image. Users may not remove any copyright, trademark, or other proprietary notices, including without limitation attribution information, credits, and copyright notices that have been placed on or near the image by the Museum. The Museum assumes no responsibility for royalties or fees claimed by the artist or third parties. The User agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Emory University, its Michael C. Carlos Museum, its agents, employees, faculty members, students and trustees from and against any and all claims, losses, actions, damages, expenses, and all other liabilities, including but not limited to attorney’s fees, directly or indirectly arising out of or resulting from its use of photographic images for which permission is granted hereunder.

On View



“Banquet Relief,” Michael C. Carlos Museum Collections Online, accessed June 26, 2019,

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