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Archaic Greek Grave Monmuments

tombs as signs of memory and honor: sema and mnema

In Archaic period, grave marker became stele

Women never depicted alone at Athens in this period

Sumptuary legislation regulating erection of such monuments.

e.g. stele of Ariston

Archaic funeral monument detaches individual commemorated from his background and presents him as an archetypal figure of timeless human significance (Humphries)

most are commemorations of young children (and do not support theory of Fustel de Coulanges about family burials)

Kouroi and Korai

statues of young men and women

used as either burial markers or religious offerings

Most korai dedicated to goddesses by men

One dedicated in c.660 to Artemis by a Nikandra who gives her father's, brother's and husband's name.

individual, not group (family) commemoration

See L&F *3273-275: esp. Xenokleia


Compare modern tombstone:

Within this grave do lie

Back to back my wife and I

When the last trump the air shall fill

If she gets up, I'll just lie still. 

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