The Endoios Athena: Athena Seated Essay

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On the Acropolis of Athens, there are a large number of votive images dedicated to Athena the city goddess in various medium, including marble, terracotta, bronze, relief and vase painting. Among these votive images of Athena, most of them are represented in a standing pose, either frontally facing the viewers or showing her profile (e.g. the bronze Athena Promachos (figure 1)); some of them are captured in the middle of an action (e.g. Athena in Gigantomachy on the pediment of the Parthenon (fg. 2)). However, the so-called Endoios Athena is a statue of Athena represented in a seated position. Although the seated position is not rare in reliefs, such as Athena on the East frieze (fg. 3) and on the metopes of the Parthenon (fg. 3), the so-called Endoios Athena is the only seated marble statue of Athena on the Acropolis in the history. (Mylonopoulos, The Acropolis of Athens in the 6th and 5th Century BCE, Lecture Notes at Columbia University, March 31)
Found on the N. slope of the Acropolis below the Erechtheion in 1821, the so-called Endoios Athena statue is made of Island marble and is usually dated around 530-20 BCE. (Catalogue, Acropolis Museum) Due to the long exposure to open air and the destruction of wars, Athena’s head, her lower arms and the font of her left foot are completely lost, whereas much of the incision of decorative pattern on her kolpos, her right foot, left side of chair and most of the edge of the heavy base are weathered or damaged. Despite these…