Alexander Sarcophagus

Alexander Sarcophagus

slide Alexander Sarcophagus

Those are pictures of Alexander’s Sarcophagus displayed now at Istanbul Archaeological Museum. Ahhh, don ‘t think my mind is wandering. It is not, obviously, Alexander ‘s remains resting there (his tomb has never been found)… This great marble sarcophagus is called the Alexander Sarcophagus because the king is actually represented in the battle scenes we can see along the sides. Dating from the late 4, the sarcophagus is regarded as a remarkable work of art, and its carved friezes are admired as being among the most exquisite and delicate examples of Hellenistic art.

This piece was discovered in 1887 by Turkish archaeologist Osman Hamdi Bey in a royal necropolis at Sidon in Lebanon. From there this and other sarcophagi were carried by ship to Istanbul.

The hunting scene on the sarcophagus in which Greeks and Persians are shown hunting together is a symbol of the way in which Greeks and Persians were eventually united under Macedonian rule.

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