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The base of an epinetron from Athens

The epinetron (Greek: ἐπίνητρον, plural: epinetra, ἐπίνητρα; "distaff"); Beazley also called them onoi, singular: onos) was a shape of Attic pottery worn on the thighs of women during the preparation of wool, not unlike a thimble for the thigh.[1] Decorated epinetra were placed on the graves of unmarried girls, or dedicated at temples of female deities.

Because of the strong association between wool-working and the ideal woman and wife — as in the case of Penelope weaving in the Odyssey — it is a shape associated with the wedding.[2] Its decoration was not exclusively related to its own use, though it often was.


  1. ^ http://www.beazley.ox.ac.uk/tools/pottery/shapes/epinetron.htm
  2. ^ Compare the loutrophoros, which also had a strong connection to the wedding.

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