Weekly Auctions of Exceptional Items
0 selections
Log In
0 selections
lots of lots
Lot 0033
Classical World, northern Italy, Etruria, probably from Montepulciano (near Chiusi), ca. 2nd to 1st century BCE. A wonderful example of a ceramic cinerarium, an urn for ashes, complete with lid depicting a woman reclining on a couch. The form is known as a cippi (box), and replaced the earlier Chiusi urns, which were ovoid. Her draped clothing is nicely molded, and her face is turned towards the viewer, with the curls of her hair visible around the edges of the cloak she wears around her head. One arm and hand are nicely presented lying along her side in a naturalistic pose. The base of the urn has column-like decoration at its corners and an incised inscription in Etruscan Latin reading "Pacinnei Celias." Size with lid: 5.75" L x 11.25" W x 11.5" H (14.6 cm x 28.6 cm x 29.2 cm)

The Etruscans in this region cremated their dead and deposited the ashes in a variety of containers. Women's cineraria are just one example of the prominence of women in Etruscan art, which suggests that they had more rights and public roles than women did in the Greek and Roman worlds. Etruscan women had their own names and could pass their rank on to children, as demonstrated by the use of matronyms on women's tombs.

According to the Sylloge Inscriptionum Latinarum Aevi Romanae Rei Publicae Usque Ad C. Iulium Caesarem Plenissima by Raffaele Garrucci (a book of known Roman Republic inscriptions), "Pacinnei Celias" is from Montepulciano (approximately twelve miles/twenty kilometers northwest of Chiusi). The Celus surname appears to correspond to an elite family from that region, and is found on multiple tombs in that area.

Provenance: private New Jersey, USA collection

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.



Lid is intact, with a small patch of yellow writing low on its back and two collection stickers on its underside. Body is also intact. A collection sticker is taped onto its interior rim. Encrustations and remaining pigment give the piece a nice archaeological surface. There are small chips and nicks commensurate with age over the surface.

Starting Bid


Buyer's Premium

  • 24.5%

Etruscan Terracotta Cinerarium w/ Latin Inscription

Estimate $5,000 - $7,000
|Sell a Similar Item
Competing Bid
Starting Bid
686 S. Taylor Avenue Suite 106
Louisville, CO 80027
United States
Ask a Question|