If you have not already done so, check the inside back cover of our 2015-16 Roman Calendar for a reproducible worksheet that asks students to engage with the mythology-oriented artwork included in the calendar.
For those completing the worksheet, here is October's
image, question, and answer.
|This Vatican statue depicts Bacchus, |
the god of wine and festivities.
Question: What symbols in this statue identify the subject as Bacchus?
Answer: Classicists will identify this Vatican statue as Bacchus for several reasons. As Ovid writes, "The god himself, garlanded by clustered grapes in respect to his forehead, waves a wreathed wand" (Metamorphoses 2.666). Though this statue of Bacchus does not include the wand, it does capture the garland referenced in Ovid's epic poem. In Ovid, as well as in other sources, Bacchus is called boyish and youthful, but as often as he is depicted thus, artists choose to portray him as older and bearded. This sculptor clearly chose the latter take. Lastly, he holds a drinking vessel and a bunch of grapes, representative of his position as the god of wine.
Think your students know the answer to the November question on the worksheet? Tweet @BCPublishers the answer by November 25th for a chance to win five of our new buttons. We’ll announce our answers, as well as the winner, at the beginning of December. Submit an answer for your class, or encourage students to participate individually.
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