Greek colonies (Magna Graecia), Hellenistic Period, ca. 2nd to 1st century BCE. A beautiful bowl, made from red ceramic and painted a glossy black, with a mold-made decorative exterior. The walls of the bowl are steep, with a slightly flared, rolled rim. The exterior has a pattern of columns surrounded by stars below a border of mirror-like shapes. The underside has an eight-petaled flower motif. In place of one of the stars is a signature that is mostly legible, reading, "ERAWN." Size: 4.5" W x 2.95" H (11.4 cm x 7.5 cm)
These Megarian style bowls, by being mold-made rather than thrown on a wheel, allowed artisans to produce bowls with intricate stamped designs that we believe are in imitation of more expensive metal bowls. They were made to be owned by people aspiring to wealth, or at least an appearance of it. Bowls like this one were used as drinking cups, replacing the kantharos. Italian variants frequently have stamped signatures, referencing the name of the potter or the owner of the potteries.
Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection
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