• r2-21-10
    Relief of Cybele seated with lion in her lap and at her feet, front. (Telif hakkı Sart Amerikan Hafriyat Heyeti / Harvard Üniversitesi)
  • r2-21-20
    Relief of Cybele seated with lion in her lap and at her feet, three quarter view. (Telif hakkı Sart Amerikan Hafriyat Heyeti / Harvard Üniversitesi)

Kucağında ve Ayaklarında Aslanla Oturmuş Kibele Rölyefi

4th C. BC, Geç Lidya (Pers)
Manisa, Arkeoloji ve Etnografya Müzesi, 4101
Müze Envanter No.
Sardeis veya Müze Env. No.
Mermer, Taş
Eserin Türü
Heykelin Türü
Naiskos, Kabartma, İnsan Figürü, Votif Kabartması
Alan (Sektör)
Bulunduğu Yeri
Found during building of camp wall on second terrace, 1.70 below terrace level. Was reused in a wall. Cf. Sardis R1, 57, fig. 61. This is the only Cybele monument found near the Artemis Precinct.

The marble piece is flat on top but cut in front to indicate a very shallowly pitched roof with a round central and two palmette-shaped corner acroteria. Details may have been indicated by painting. The sides, acting as pilasters, have no carved details. The back is very roughly trimmed with a chisel. On top, a clamp which was broken off was at the upper l. corner, and the trace of a dowel extends forward from the back. On the r. side are three cuttings for clamping; the upper and middle ones are vertical and the lower one horizontal. The relief, then, was fastened from the top and sides to a stone frame or wall.

Cybele, whose head reaches over the frame, has no polos. She wears a chiton and a cloak draped over her lower body and legs, of which a fold falls over the throne on her r. side. In her l. hand she holds a big tympanum and in her r. hand a small round bowl. She is seated on a square throne. A small lion lies in her lap, the head to her r. A lion sejant in profile sits at her feet on her r.

The work is interesting in that it combines the earlier type of a seated Cybele holding a lion in her lap, which begins in late archaic times, with a type of the Mother of Gods in Phidian style, created by Agorakritos (?) and distinguished by Cybele’s holding the tympanum and having two (rather than one) lions sitting at her sides. An enormous number of Cybele reliefs are known. The Sardian must be later than the image by Agorakritos. Picard (Manuel II.2, 542f.) and Langlotz (Phidiasprobleme, 65ff., pl. 17) followed by Stevens (Painted Lioness, 181f., pls. 47-48, reconstruction) argue that Phidias made the image for the Metroon around 450 B.C.

In any event, the Sardis relief is later than 400 B.C. because of the naiskos with shallow roof and the very precise clamp cutting which may belong to the 4th C. B.C. The provincial or “popular” sketchy execution permits no closer dating.


Very white marble with large crystals. Strong red accretion.

Upper l. and lower r. corner broken off. Top chipped. Heavily incrusted.

H. 0.345; W. 0.285; D. at bottom 0.075, at top 0.07. Background recessed to 0.03. Clamp cuttings: upper, distance from top 0.025, L. 0.06, W. 0.013; middle, distance from upper cutting 0.07, L. 0.04, W. 0.016; lower, distance from middle cutting 0.055, L. 0.055, W. 0.015.
For the Cybeles of the archaic seated type with lions in lap cf. von Salis, Gottermutter, 19ff., figs. 8f.; S. Reinach, Statues archaiques; Will, “Grande Mère”, 98, 101f., 111; Salviat, Steles et naiskoi, 251. For the so-called Agorakritos type see von Salis, Gottermutter, 1ff., figs. 1-5; he remarks that the number and position of lions was not quite certain. The basic distinction between Asiatic lap lion and Agorakritan sitting lion types was drawn by Svoronos (Athener Nationalmuseum 2, 622ff., pls. 116-120, 239-240), who published 52 reliefs mostly from Athens and Piraeus. Athens, Agora: Stevens, Painted Lioness, pls. 40a, b; T. L. Shear, Excavations in the Agora, 183, fig. 9 (seated lion). O. Walter, Beschreibung Akropolismuseum, 75ff. nos. 126-170. Piraeus and Ephesus: Berlin Beschreibung, 257ff., nos. 691-705. Thasos: Salviat, Steles et naiskoi, 244, figs. 8-10. For later Sardian representation of Cybele-Meter-Theon, cf. Cat. 256, Cat. 259 (Figs. 442, 447). For possible difference between the local Cybele of Sardis and the regional Meter Theon Lydias, cf. inscription in BASOR177, 36, fig. 34, IN64.045.
Ayrıca bakınız
Hanfmann, Sardis und Lydien, 30-31, pl. 11, fig. 15; Hanfmann-Waldbaum, Kybele and Artemis, 268, ill. Similar “conflated” types:, nos. 699-701, Ephesus.