The Feeder Feed: Theban Sphinx Edition

You know the story of Oedipus.

Here is a terracotta bell-krater from Paestum in S Italy. It is attributed to Python in the last quarter of the 4th c. BC.





In S Italy the tragic Oedipus was sometimes depicted in the guise of farce.
Looking closely, you can see a snake and a bird, both associated with oracles.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Supertradmum says:

    Exquisite. You could call your third book on birds in art “A Bird in the Hand”.

    Thanks for sharing. I love ancient pottery.

  2. AnAmericanMother says:

    He also has the attributes of a follower of Dionysos — the thyrsus and the panther skin, as well as the headband. The snake is also associated with the maenads.
    Dionysos and his followers are referred to by Sophocles in the Oedipus cycle — somewhere. But it’s been awhile.

  3. Traductora says:

    Yes…but where’s the squirrel?

  4. irishgirl says:

    Wow, you sure got ‘real close’ in the last picture, Father Z!
    How did you do that without rousing the suspicions of any museum guards?
    Pretty cool that something like this has survived all these centuries, though!

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