Battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs

Battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs

Date ca. 460 BCE

Movement Greek | Classical

Medium Marble

Dimensions slightly over-life-size

Provenance West Pediment, Temple of Zeus, Olympia

Housed at Archaeological Museum, Olympia


This image is a partial photographic reconstruction of the sculptural program of the West Pediment of the Temple of Zeus at Olympia. Apollo presides over the ensuing battle, his strong gaze and commanding arm displaying intent direction, while his frontal pose insinuates that he is removed from the physical commotion. Snarling beasts entangle themselves amongst the human warriors, who are headstrong and calm. The theme is clear—reason, order and rationality triumph over chaos.