Relief: Das Heroon von Trysa

Kleinasiatisch, Griechisch-lykisch, um 380 v. Chr.



Das Heroon von Trysa

On a ridge in the rugged mountainous region of Lycia lies the ancient settlement of Trysa, a fortified castle with a village and several necropolises. Today it is famous for the magnificent figurative frieze that decorated the enclosing walls of the Heroon, the grave precinct of a local ruler venerated like a hero, located northeast of the castle hill. Together with his closest relatives, he was buried in a multi-storey tomb erected inside the precinct. The funerary cult was celebrated in an adjacent wooden building. We do not know the name of the tomb’s owner but he must have been one of the powerful dynasts of Lycia known from Lycian coinage. The originally polychrome reliefs combine myths and legends with episodes from the life of the ruler buried here. Note the unique conflation of local-Lycian and Persian culture, the intimations of linear perspective, and the art-historically remarkable arrangement of two relief zones superimposed upon one another, which at times recount separate narratives but occasionally also form part of a single composition. Stylistic criteria suggest the friezes were produced around 380 bc, but this has not been universally accepted.

Location: Neue Burg, Ephesos Museum Jagdplateau 3

Object data

Object Name







um 380 v. Chr.



Image rights

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Antikensammlung

Inv. No.

Antikensammlung, I Heroon Trysa


Österreichische Expedition Prof. Benndorf; Ges. zur archäol. Erforschung Kleinasiens; 1883 Geschenk

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