Sometimes objects from Scythian burials can tell us surprising details. For
example, not so long ago in 1982 Professor A.M.Leskov, a Moscow
archaeologist, while excavating a Scythian burial at aul Ulyap in Adyghe
found a silver horn-shaped vessel with the lower part imitating the winged
horse Pegasus. E.V.Vlasova, a Hermitage research worker, found out that
there were at least two periods in the history of this thing. At the end of the
VI th c. BC it was a Greek horn, used as such for about 40 - 50 years (till
470-460 years BC). Then a protomem, the
front half of the Pegasus's figure
was fixed on it and the joint was covered with a gilded rim, the lower part of
the mouth was engirded with another wide rim , decorated with engraved
fight of titans. A stem with a round base was soldered from below.
The engraving on the rim with depictions of the fight between gods
and titans is of
special interest. Together with the usual fights of
people, armed with short swords, there is a fight scene, strange at
first sight. The personage, interpreted by some researchers (e.g.
F.R. Balonov) as
Zeus, holds in his hand a bundle of grass or some
plant stalks, not a thunderbolt or any other weapon. Specialists
think, it is either mandrake or iris. Both plants figure in Greek
mythology and are provided with medicinal and lethal qualities.
Among other recognizable personages there are Hephaestus with
forging tongs and a goddess, probably Hera. The engraved frieze on
the rhyton will be studied by specialists for a long time.