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Copy, 1st half of the 2nd century A.D. RomanmarbleH 142 cm

Myron is one of the most important sculptors of the Greek classical age. The group of the goddess Athena with the satyr Marsyas, which was once displayed at the Acropolis in Athens, is one of his major works. The monument depicts the myth of Athena inventing the flute, and is to express Athens’ claim to political rule. Mocked when playing the instrument, Athena discards the flute. This gesture is intended to show the city of Athens’ disregard for the lowly art of playing the flute. Marsyas on the other hand, who bends down to pick the flute up, represents the uncivilised and rustic province of Boeotia, where they loved flute music.