Interior frieze (east) of the Great Altar at Pergamon
Elisabeth Rohde. Pergamon, Burgberg und Altar fig.111. Sequence and interpretation by H.Schrader
Only about one third of this frieze survives, and in a fragmentary state. It shows the life-story of the hero Telephos, whom the ruling dynasty of Pergamon adopted as an ancestor. In most friezes we know of prior to this, actions take place against a placeless and timeless blank background. In this frieze, however, figures occupy real space and time, indicated by such things as trees, hills, seats, ships. This inovative approach must have been inspired by the paintings of the period.