Griffin from Olympia
Olympia , 640 b.C
National Archaeological Museum , Athens
Griffin protome (bust) that once decorated a tripod cauldron. From the sanctuary of Zeus at Olympia.
The griffin is a legendary creature with the body, tail, and back legs of a lion the head and wings of an eagle and sometimes an eagle’s talons as its front feet. Because the lion was traditionally considered the king of the beasts, and the eagle the king of the birds, by the Middle Ages, the griffin was thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature. Since classical antiquity, griffins were known for guarding treasures and priceless possessions.