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481 GREECE-LANGUAGE, LITERATURE, AND ART.

methods known to the Greeks, namely, the overlaying of a statue with hammered plates of

metal. But the rude works of the primitive artists gave but little prophecy of the

splendors of which this style was capable in the hands of a Phidias. To him also was

attributed the famous group of Niobe-that mother of anguish, smitten by the gods for her

maternal pride.

After Phidias, PRAXITELES stands highest among the sculptors of the Greeks. His theme was

passionate love. Venus was his ideal. In five statues he gave her the form of marble. His

Aphrodite Knidos is preserved-in a copy-in the museum at Munich.1

At the head of the sculptors of the time of Alexander the Great stood LYSIPPUS. He

introduced a new quality into statuary -that of an ideal refinement upon nature. His works

show a delicacy in limb and member which could hardly be equaled in those of any other

master. So great was the reputation of this artist that Alexander would be modeled by no

other. His most famous work is the Apoxyomenos, now in the Vatican Museum.

After the time of Lysippus two schools of sculpture arose, the one having its seat in

Pergamon and the other in Rhodes. The artists of these schools followed and imitated their

predecessors; but their works in many instances exhibited original force directed by the

hand of genius. The Pergamine sculptors were specially noted for the realistic effects at

which they aimed in their productions, many of which are wonderful in fidelity. Such is

the celebrated piece representing a dying Gaul in the Roman amphitheater-a work which

evoked from the genius of Byron one of his finest stanzas:

1 The Venus of Melos, by an unknown artist, be- longs to this period, and is regarded as

par excellence the most beautiful piece of Grecian sculpture.

"I see before me the gladiator lie; He leans upon his hand-his manly brow Consents to

death, but conquers agony, And his drooped head sinks gradually low- And through his side

the last drops, ebbing slow From the red gash, fall heavy, one by one,

Like the first of a thunder-shower; and now The arena swims around him-he is gone, Ere

ceased the inhuman shout which hailed the wretch who won."