Rhyton (Drinking Vessel) in Shape of Sheep's Head

A work made of terracotta, decorated in the red-figure technique.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of terracotta, decorated in the red-figure technique.

Date:

about 320/310 BC

Artist:

Attributed to the Painter of Leningrad 955
Greek; Tarentum (now Taranto), Apulia, Italy

About this artwork

Decorated tableware enlivened festive meals. The red-figure plates were used, as their decoration suggests, for serving seafood, a staple of the Mediterranean diet. Tasty juices pooled in the central concavity, which may also have contained sauces. The vessel fashioned in the shape of a sheep’s head is a special kind of drinking cup that cannot be set down when full. The other cup is an example of Gnathia ware, named after the ancient town (modern Egnazia) where the first examples were found. Gnathia ware is characterized by polychrome motifs and patterns created by applying purple-red, yellow, and white directly on top of black gloss before the vessels were fired.

On View

Ancient and Byzantine Art, Gallery 151

Artist

Ancient Greek

Title

Rhyton (Drinking Vessel) in Shape of Sheep's Head

Origin

Southern Italy

Date

320 AD–310 AD

Medium

terracotta, decorated in the red-figure technique

Dimensions

20.9 × 11.4 × 12 cm (8 1/4 × 4 1/2 × 4 3/4 in.)

Credit Line

Bequest of Chester D. Tripp

Reference Number

1986.883

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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