Callistratus, Descriptions 3. On the Statue of Eros

LCL 256: 384-385

Go To Section
Go To Section

Callistratus: Descriptions


(1) Καὶ ἑτέρας ἱερᾶς τέχνης οἱ λόγοι προφητεῦσαι βούλονται· οὐ γάρ μοι θεμιτὸν μὴ καλεῖν 15ἱερὰ τὰ τέχνης γεννήματα. Ἔρως ἦν, Πραξιτέλους τέχνημα, ὁ Ἔρως αὐτός, παῖς ἀνθηρὸς καὶ νέος πτέρυγας ἔχων καὶ τόξα. χαλκὸς δὲ αὐτὸν ἐτύπου, καὶ ὡς ἂν Ἔρωτα τυπῶν τύραννον θεὸν καὶ μέγαν καὶ αὐτὸς ἐδυναστεύετο· οὐ γὰρ 20ἠνείχετο χαλκὸς εἶναι τὰ πάντα, ἀλλ᾿ ὅσος ἦν, Ἔρως ἐγίνετο. (2) Εἶδες ἂν τὸν χαλκὸν θρυπτόμενον καὶ εἰς εὐσαρκίαν ἀμηχάνως χλιδῶντα καὶ ὡς βραχέως εἰπεῖν τὰ ἀναγκαῖα πληροῦν ἑαυτῇ τὴν ὕλην ἀρκοῦσαν. ὑγρὸς μὲν ἦν ἀμοιρῶν 25μαλακότητος,1 χαλκῷ δὲ ἔχων συνῳδὸν τὴν


3. On the Statue of Eros

3. On the Statue of Eros3

My discourse desires to interpret another sacred work of art; for it is not right for me to refuse to call the productions of art sacred. The Eros, the workmanship of Praxiteles,4 was Eros himself, a boy in the bloom of youth with wings and bow. Bronze gave expression to him, and as though giving expression to Eros as a great and dominating god, it was itself subdued by Eros; for it could not endure to be only bronze, but it became Eros just as he was. You might have seen the bronze losing its hardness and becoming marvellously delicate in the direction of plumpness and, to put the matter briefly, the material proving equal to fulfilling all the obligations that were laid upon it. It was supple but without effeminacy; and while it had the proper colour of bronze, it looked

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.callistratus-descriptions_3_statue_eros.1931