Museum Messene

Messene’s small museum contains some fine finds from the actual Messene site. Many statues are in fact Roman replicas of ancient and famous Greek originals, but there are also many originals to be seen. A visit to Messene therefore deserves a visit to this museum.

Left: A heavily damaged Roman copy of the famous Doryphoros of the Classical Greek sculptor Polykleitos.

Left: A Herme of the Athenian type, rectangular with clearly marked genitals, with a head on top. Here, however, not (as usual) the god Hermes is depicted as the protector of crossroads and travelers, but Heracles, as can be seen by the lion skin tied around his head.

These images presumably represent Machaon and Podaleirios, the two sons of Asklepios, known from Homer, among others, who were worshiped as healing demigods in many places in the Greek world. The two statues, together with the partially preserved statue of Asklepios, formed one group of statues from the great sanctuary for Asklepios, which is mentioned by Pausanias. The youngest son, Podaleirios, with his slender figure and curly locks, is reminiscent of his grandfather, Apollo.