ORA Book section: "Bird-women on the Harpy Monument from Xanthos, Lycia: sirens or harpies" - uuid:a70b11c6-b3c4-4d21-82f0-e695aae74f05

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Reference: Catherine M. Draycott, Bird-women on the Harpy Monument from Xanthos, Lycia: sirens or harpies In Donna Kurtz ed. (2008). Essays in Classical Archaeology for Eleni Hatzivassiliou 1977-2007. 145 – 153.

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Title: Bird-women on the Harpy Monument from Xanthos, Lycia: sirens or harpies

Abstract: The initial identification of the bird-women on the Harpy Monument as the eponymous 'harpies' has long been superseded by the identification of the creatures as sirens. The small figures they are shown carrying have often been seen as eidola or souls of the deceased. This in turn has led to the idea that one of the functions of sirens was to transport the souls of the deceased to the afterlife. However, there is every reason to believe that the images show an abduction image, related to contemporary images of sphinxes carrying off young males. It is unusual in that the figures they abduct are female, and in this the images actually do recall the legend of the harpies abducting the daughters of Pandareos, which led to the initial naming of the tomb. Although they may not be adequately labelled as 'harpies' or 'sirens', their role as shown here is closer to the former than the latter.


Publication status:Published
Peer Review status:Not peer reviewed
Version:Publisher's version
Notes:Citation: Draycott, C. (2008). Bird-women on the Harpy Monument from Xanthos, Lycia: sirens or harpies. In: Kurtz, D. (ed.) Essays in Classical Archaeology for Eleni Hatzivassiliou 1977-2007. Oxford: Archaeopress, pp. 145-153.
About The Authors
institutionUniversity of Oxford
facultyHumanities Division - Classics Faculty - Classical Archaeology
oxfordCollegeSomerville College
 
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Bibliographic Details
Publisher: Archaeopress
Host: Essays in Classical Archaeology for Eleni Hatzivassiliou 1977-2007 see more from them
Extent: 145 – 153
Issue Date: 2008
Copyright Date: 2008
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Isbn: 978-1-903767-05-4
Urn: uuid:a70b11c6-b3c4-4d21-82f0-e695aae74f05
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Copyright Holder: Catherine M. Draycott
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