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Etruscan bucchero-ware chalice

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posted on 2022-08-09, 07:54 authored by Centre for Ancient Cultures MuseumCentre for Ancient Cultures Museum

A well-preserved bucchero-ware pottery chalice or stemmed cup with the characteristic black sheen and ceramic style of the Etruscan world. It has high stem, flaring sharply at the base, and small conical moulding near the top of the foot; a wide mouth with collared rim. The base of the walls shows a fine notched carination and is decorated mid-way with three horizontal concentric grooves incised on the black-glazed surface around the body. The colour was achieved by reducing firing, in an atmosphere charged with carbon monoxide rather than oxygen. The shape and general appearance derived from, and mimic, metalwork models for a fraction of the cost.

Stylistic remarks: for the presence of a single ring on the long stem, it belongs to the group of Rasmussen Type 2d, very common.

Object number: 127.025.

Date: 620–600 BCE

Parallels: very similar examples Sydney, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences A6011; London, British Museum 1839,0214.137, 1839,0214.138, 1906,0111.2, 1922,0413.5, 1977,0717.3; Oxford, Pitt Rivers Museum 1884.37.83; compare with Ann Arbor, Kelsey Museum of Archaeology KM 2590.

References: Ramage, Nancy Hirschland. “Studies in Early Etruscan Bucchero”, Papers of the British School at Rome, vol. 38, Roma: British School at Rome, 1970, pp. 1–61; Camporeale, G.N “Archaic Pottery: Impasto and Bucchero Wares.”, The Etruscans, ed. M. Torelli, 2000, New York: Rizzoli, pp. 405–419; Rasmussen, T., Bucchero Pottery from Southern Etruria, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1979; Perkins, P., Etruscan Bucchero / A Catalogue of Etruscan Bucchero in the British Museum, London: British Museum Press, 2007; Riva, C., The Urbanisation of Eturia: Funerary Practices and Social Change 700-600 BC, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020; R. D. De Puma, Etruscan Art in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2013, fig. 4.69a and b.

Photo by Steve Morton