This handsomely illustrated volume is aimed at giving a broad audience deeper insight into the extensive collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The museum is famed for its Greek vases, of which 35 notable examples are detailed in this book. They reveal the variety and vitality of the refined forms and masterfully rendered scenes that characterize these works. And they demonstrate the interrelation of function, shape, technique, and subject matter that is key to understanding the rich language of Greek vases. The introduction provides valuable background information, and the entries delve into the features of each vase, incorporating brilliant color illustrations and many arresting details. Greek vases served specific utilitarian functions, and they also afforded outstanding artists, some of whom signed their work, a medium for depicting both the details of daily existence and aspects of their gods, goddesses, and heroes. We see the garments, implements, athletic competitions, and marriages and funerary rituals of Greeks who lived from the seventh through the fourth century B.C. We also see their mythological figures and stories. The exceptional group of works assembled in this volume conveys the extent to which the culture of ancient Greece is still apparent today. This book is sure to inspire closer scrutiny of these remarkable works of art, which have survived for over two millennia to offer viewers an enlightening look into the ancient heritage of the Western world. -- from inside Front Cover.