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Leochares

LEOCHARES, a Greek sculptor who worked with Scopas on the Mausoleum about 350 B.C. He executed statues of the family of Philip of Macedon, in gold and ivory, which were set up by that king in the Philippeum at Olympia. He also with Lysippus made a group in bronze at Delphi representing a lion-hunt of Alexander. Of this the base with an inscription was recently found. We hear of other statues by Leochares of Zeus, Apollo and Ares. The statuette in the Vatican, representing Ganymede being carried away by an eagle, though considerably restored and poor in execution, so closely corresponds with Pliny's description of a group by Leochares that we are justified in considering it a copy of that group, especially as the Vatican statue shows all the characteristics of Attic 4th-century art. Pliny (N.H. 34. 79) writes: "Leochares made a group of an eagle aware whom it is carrying off in Ganymede and to whom it is bearing him; holding the boy delicately in its claws, with his garment between." (For engraving see GREEK ART, Plate I. fig. 53.) The tree stem is skilfully used as a support; and the upward strain of the group is ably rendered. The close likeness both in head and pose between the Ganymede and the well-known Apollo Belvidere has caused some modern archaeologists to assign the latter also to Leochares. With somewhat more confidence we may regard the fine statue of Alexander the Great at Munich as a copy of his gold and ivory portrait at Olympia. (P. G.)

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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