Mixing Vessels

Ancient Greeks had usually drunk wine mixed with water. "Krater" is a mixing bowl and the name is from the word "Kerannmi" means to mix.

Krater usually has a round body, a wide mouth, a heavy stand and a handle on either side, and is generally classified into four types from the shape of the body or the handles. "Volute Krater" has a handle on either side which is in the form of a spiral . "Column Krater" has a handle formed columnar shape. "Calyx Krater" has a body in the form of the calyx. "Bell Krater" has a body formed of an inverted bell. In the early year of the black-figure, "Skyphos Krater", which has a round bowl, a domed lid with a knob and a high stand, was made.
Volute Krater

Round body, a offset neck, a heavy stand and two handles which is in the form of a spiral with flanged sides rising from loops on the shoulder to above to the rim. This shape was introduced in the second quarter of the sixth century, though the examples with the black-figure are rare and flourished after the end of the century. Cf. Paris, Louvre CA3482 (Perseus Project). Workshops of Apulia, a Greek colony in South Italy, favoured this shape.

The form became slenderer as time went by and Gorgoneia, masks of the Medusa, are applied on the volutes of the handles in Apulia. Figured scene is arranged on either side of the body and sometimes on the neck. Usually flower ornaments flourish the vase.

Dimensions: height about 70cm, though there are many vases over 1m high in apulian vases.

Column Krater

Round body, a offset neck with a thick lip and a heavy stand. Each handle consists of a pair of cylindrical stems terminating in a horizontal member joined to the rim.

This shape was produced from the first half of the sixth century and favoured till the third quarter of the fifth, then losed its popularity.

Figured scene is usually arranged in the paneled picture on the body. The lip sometimes has a animal frieze drawn by the black-figure. The ornament is simple and often a bud pattern is arranged on the neck. Cf. Harvard 1925.30.125 (Perseus Project).

Dimensions: height about 40-50cm
Calyx Krater

Deep body with the lower convex, the upper slightly concave. A heavy stand and handles which are set at the top of the lower part, curve upward.

The first example was maybe produced by Exekias in about 530B.C. In the age of the red-figure, this shape was favoured and used till the end of this technique.

A frieze picture is arranged on the upper part without a interruption by the handles. A palmette pattern is usually arranged on the lower part. Cf. Harvard1959.236 (Perseus Project).

Dimensions: height about 40-50cm, and over 60cm in the late red-figure
Bell Krater

Bell shaped body with loop handles placed high on the body and curving slightly upward and a heavy stand. Some early example have not loop handles but lugs.

This shape was introduced after the beginning of the red-figure and especially favoured after the middle of the fifth century.

The figured scene is arranged on the body and the ornament is very simple. Cf. Harvard 1960.343 (Perseus Project).

Dimensions: height about 40-50cm
Skyphoid Krater

Round bowl with small handles, conical lid with a tall knob and tall stand. This shape was preferred only in the early black-figure.

Figured scene is arranged on the lid, the body and the stand and animal friezes are favoured.

Dimensions: height about 100cm

Deep bowl with round bottom sometimes with a stand, which is needed for the shape. The name "Lebes" must be used for this shape, though "Dinos" was used for the cup and not correct name. Cf. Paris, Louvre E874 (Perseus Project).

This shape was most favoured in the early black-figure and painted by the red-figured painter, though not so many example is left.

In the black-figure, the pictures are arranged as friezes, sometimes with animals. Some example has a figured scene on the rim. Red-figure painter preferred to arrange the wide picture on the body.

Dimensions: height about 20cm, and about 70cm with its stand.