Panel in high relief depicting Perseus, Athena, Medusa, and Pegasus

Archaic. Cast of the original in the Regional Archaeological Museum, Palermo. Metope from a temple in Selinunte, a Greek colony on the southern coast of Sicily, 6th-5th centuries BCE.


This relief depicts the hero Perseus, attended by the goddess Athena, in the act of slaying the Gorgon Medusa. The winged horse Pegasus, one of Medusa’s two offspring by Poseidon, emerges from her blood as she dies. Traces of color found on the original indicate the relief had been painted, a practice now know to be common in Greek art. Characteristics of Egyptian art are evident. The kneeling figure – one knee resting on the ground, the other leg at a right angle – symbolizes a rapid running motion in the Archaic period.

Original Statue

Artist: Unknown
Culture: ArchaicGreek
Century: 5th century BCE6th century BCE
Current Location: ItalyPalermo
Museum: Regional Archaeological Museum

  • ancient greece
  • archaic
  • athena
  • greek
  • Greek mythology
  • medusa
  • pegasus
  • perseus
  • relief