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Roman Green-Glazed Pottery Bowl w/ Incised Design

Roman, early Imperial Period, ca. 1st century BCE to 1st century CE. A stunning wheel-thrown ceramic bowl with a concave footed base, wide walls bearing a series of repeating, deeply-incised linear and triangular motifs, a deep basin, and a thick rim with a shallow indentation, presumably for a lid. The bowl exhibits a wondrously-reflective glaze, with the exterior surface glazed in hues of yellow-green, and the interior in more verdant and emerald green colors. Adding to the opulent appearance are fiery areas of silvery and rainbow-hued iridescence. For centuries, Greco-Roman pottery was decorated via the black-figure and red-figure techniques; however, in the second half of the 1st century BCE, the Romans created this interesting variation - covering vessels with vitreous glazes that made for beautiful glossy colors like the gorgeous greens and yellows gracing this rare vessel. Size: 6.3" W x 2.8" H (16 cm x 7.1 cm).

According to an article published in the journal of the Princeton University Art Museum, "When Cicero was travelling in the east in 50 B.C., his friend Atticus asked him to order 'Rhosica vasa,' presumably vases made in the town of Rhosus on the modern Gulf of Alexandretta, and presumably vases of unusual ceramic interest. Cicero expressed surprise, as we know from one of his letters, since Atticus, like the well-to-do of his day, ate off metal dishes, but apparently he complied with his friend's request." ("A Lead-Glazed Cup", F.F.J. Record of the Art Museum, Princeton University Vol. 20, No. 2 (1961), pp. 57-59.)

For a stylistically-similar example of fine Roman green-glazed pottery, please see The Metropolitan Museum of Art, accession number 24.46: https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/251457

For further reading about this glazed ceramic technique, read "A Lead-Glazed Cup", F.F.J. Record of the Art Museum, Princeton University Vol. 20, No. 2 (1961), pp. 57-59.

Condition: Original lid missing. Surface wear and abrasions commensurate with age, small chips to rim, body, and foot, with some chipping and fading to glaze coloration, and light roughness across most surfaces. Nice earthen deposits and traces of glazing throughout, with scattered areas of stunning silver and rainbow iridescence.

Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection

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