Lykos Kalos: Beyond Youthful Beauty

by Seth D. Pevnick

Hesperia, Volume 90, Issue 4
Page(s): 641-683
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2972/hesperia.90.4.0641
Year: 2021


This article explores the use of the kalos-name Lykos, which appears on more than 30 Athenian red-figure vases produced in the first few decades of the 5th century B.C. Based on their relatively restricted chronology and attribution to a small number of mostly related workshops, previous scholars have suggested that many (if not all) of these kalos-inscriptions refer to a single historical figure, presumably a good-looking Athenian aristocrat. The popularity of this name on vases and elsewhere, together with its non-onomastic meaning (“wolf ”), invites alternative interpretations, most notably the possibility that several instances may refer to a famous racehorse known to have prevailed at Olympia.