Images of Music in Magna Graecia: the Case of the “Tomb of the Diver” at Poseidonia (V century BCE)

Bellia, Angela (2014) Images of Music in Magna Graecia: the Case of the “Tomb of the Diver” at Poseidonia (V century BCE). Music in Art, XXXIX (1-2). pp. 33-41. ISSN 1522-7464
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The representations of the symposium in the Greek funerary paintings recall the habit of meeting and being together, practiced also in the colonies of the West. During these moments, that had a strong social and political relevance, the people, linked by friendship and common interests, drank wine in the presence of male or female players. The figurative themes belong to common representations that were widespread in the ancient Mediterranean. They would seem to refer to happiness after death and to the continuation of life in all its happy and positive aspects. The images are projected beyond death where a serene and youthful humanity prepares to reach a state of happiness in the afterlife. This happiness consists essentially in prolonging the pleasures of the earthly symposium, where the gift of Dionysos joins with the singing and the music. This imagerie connected with the idea of happiness in the afterlife seems to be the background of the musical scenes represented in the graves of Magna Grecia. It is exceptional evidence of paintings, which helps us to understand how music is the greatest pleasure, even after death.

Document type
Bellia, AngelaUniversità di Bologna0000-0002-1517-6012
Tomb of the Diver; lyre; barbitos; Western Greece; West Greeks; Tomba del Tuffatore; Poseidonia;
Deposit date
26 Jul 2016 09:30
Last modified
26 Jul 2016 09:30
Project name
TELESTES - TELESTES. Musics, cults and rites of a Greek city in the West
Funding program
EC - FP7

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