Atlas Bringing Herakles Apples of the Hesperides

Atlas Bringing Herakles Apples of the Hesperides

Date ca. 460 BCE

Movement Greek | Classical

Medium Marble

Height height 63”

Provenance East Entrance Metopese, Temple of Zeus, Olympia

Housed at Archaeological Museum, Olympia

 

Depicted is Atlas, having fooled Herakles into taking up his task of holding the earth aloft, returning with apples of Hesperides; Herakles, meanwhile, contemplates revenge. The reserved, “doughy” faces are typical of the Classical sculpture of this period. The story is topical—perhaps it warns ancient Olympian athletes of the dangers of cheating.