A wine cup believed to have belonged to one of the greats of ancient Greece has been found near Athens, according to published reports.
A cup thought to have been used by Classical Greek statesman Pericles was recently found in a pauper’s grave in the northern Athens suburb of Kifissia, the Greek newspaper Ta Nea reported.
The ceramic wine cup, smashed in 12 pieces, was found during building construction. After it was pieced back together, archaeologists were astounded to find the name “Pericles” scratched under one of its handles, alongside the names of five other men, in apparent order of seniority.
Experts are “99 per cent” sure that the cup was used by the Athenian statesman, as one of the other names listed, Ariphron, is that of Pericles’ elder brother.
“The name Ariphron is extremely rare,” Angelos Matthaiou, secretary of the Greek Epigraphic Society, told Ta Nea.
“Having it listed above that of Pericles makes us 99 per cent sure that these are the two brothers,” he said.
The cup was likely used in a “wine symposium” when Pericles was in his twenties, and the six men who drank from it scrawled their names as a memento, Matthaiou said.
Apparently, the youthful Pericles and/or his companions imbibed rather heavily on that particular occasion.