Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Glass beaker with inscription

Early Imperial, Julio-Claudian
1st half of 1st century A.D.
Glass; blown in a three-part mold
H. 3 in. (7.6 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of Henry G. Marquand, 1881
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 171
Translucent pale green.
Outsplayed unworked rim; cylindrical body with vertical sides; uneven, flat bottom. Two vertical mold seams run down sides from rim to edge of bottom through palm fronds, with a separate disk-shaped base section.
On body, large central frieze bordered above by two horizontal ridges and below by three horizontal ridges, and divided vertically by two palm fronds, extending from bottom of frieze to rim: the frieze contains an inscription in Greek capitals, in three lines on one side and in two lines on the other, each flanked by a pair of large stylized wreaths, comprising two concentric circles filled with chevrons, and with large wavy ribbons below; around bottom of side, continuous narrow horizontal wreath with chevrons. The inscription translates as "Take the victory!" On bottom, projecting rounded ring and central dot.
Complete except for small chips in rim, a hole in edge of bottom, and a crack down side; few bubbles, blowing striations; some dulling, small areas of encrustation, creamy and whitish weathering, with patches of brilliant iridescence.

The Greek inscription reads "Seize the victory." It is flanked by two pairs of wreaths. Such vessels were clearly intended to celebrate victories won in the games or races and had an appeal as souvenirs.
From Coudiat-Ati (vicinity of Cirta, modern Constantine), Algeria (De Villefosse 1866, pp. 37-38, 48-50, no. 28; De Villefosse 1875, p. 288)

In 1865 or 1866, found in Coudiat-Ati (vicinity of Constantine), Algeria, by Mr. Costa, “a village antiquarian”; between 1875 and 1879, acquired by Jules Charvet from Mr. Costa; by 1879 and until 1881, collection of Jules Charvet, Le Pecq, Île-de-France; 1881, purchased from J. Charvet by Henry G. Marquand; acquired in 1881, gift of Henry G. Marquand.
Marchand, Jules. 1866. "Inscriptions inédites recueillies à Constantine et dans la province, pendant les années 1865-1866." Recueil des notices et mémoires de la Société archéologique du département de Constantine, 10: no. 28, pp. 37-8, 41, 49-51.

Villefosse, Héron de. 1874. "Verres antiques trouvés en Algérie." Revue Archéologique, (n.s.) 27: pp. 288-9.

Villefosse, Héron de. 1875. "Rapport sur une mission archéologique en Algérie." Archives des Missions Scientifiques et Littéraires, 3rd series, II. no. 46, pp. 410-2, Paris.

Froehner, Wilhelm. 1879. La verrerie antique: déscription de la Collection Charvet. pp. 66, 139, pl. XXX, 122, Le Pecq: Jules Charvet.

Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1881. Twelfth Annual Report of the Trustees of the Association for eight months ending December 31, 1881. pp. 215-6, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Berolini, apud G. Reimerum. 1881. Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum, Vol. 8, pt. 2. no. 10480, p. 919.

Reinach, Salomon. 1885. Traité d'épigraphie grecque. p. 454, Paris: Ernest Leroux.

Garnier, Édouard. 1886. Histoire de la verrerie et de l’emaillerie. pp. 31-2, fig. 15, Tours: Alfred Mame et Fils.

Cesnola, Luigi Palma di. 1903. A Descriptive Atlas of the Cesnola Collection of Cypriote Antiquities in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Vol. 3, Plates & Text 1–150. pl. LXXVIII, 3, Boston: James R. Osgood and Company.

Perdrizet, Paul. 1904-1905. "Verres de Sidon donnés en prix dans des concours." Mémoires de la Société Nationale des Antiquaires de France, 7ème série, tome V: p. 292.

Kisa, Anton. 1908. Das Glas im Altertume, Vol. 2. figs. 260, 260a, Leipzig: K. W. Hiersemann.

Kisa, Anton. 1908. Das Glas im Altertume, Vol. 3. p. 720-1, Leipzig: K. W. Hiersemann.

Richter, Gisela M. A. 1911. "The Room of Ancient Glass." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 6(6) Supplement: pp. 16-7, fig. 18.

Eisen, Gustavus A. and Fahim Joseph Kouchakji. 1927. Glass: Its Origin, History, Chronology, Technic and Classification to the Sixteenth Century, Vol. 1. pl. 60e, New York: W. E. Rudge.

Harden, Donald Benjamin. 1935. "Romano-Syrian Glasses with Mould-Blown Inscriptions." The Journal of Roman Studies, 25: pp. 176-8.

Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1936. A Special Exhibition of Glass from the Museum Collections: New York, October 13 to November 29, 1936.. p. 7, fig. 3, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Vessberg, Olof. 1952. "Roman Glass in Cyprus." Opuscula archaeologica, 7: pl. XII, 2.

Forbes, Robert J. 1957. Studies in Ancient Technology, Vol. 5. p. 162, fig. 29, Leiden: Brill.

Baratte, Francois. 1989. "La Verrerie dans l'Afrique Romaine: État des Questions." Kölner Jahrbuch für vor-und Frühgeschichte, : p. 146, n. 52, fig. 6.

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