Though their function remains elusive, vessels of this shape are among the most characteristic of the late Roman world. This patera was found with a silver dish (47.100.28) and several Roman coins on the site of an ancient Roman temple, suggesting it may have been used for ceremonial purposes. The name inscribed on the handle may refer to the maker or commissioner of the piece.
Inscription: (underside of handle): L. MARCIUS
Found in Leyris, southern France; Private Collection(sold 1920); Sotheby's, London(December 6-7, 1920, no. 342); [ Brummer Gallery, Paris and New York (1920–sold 1921)]; Irwin Untermyer, New York (1921–sold 1927); [ Brummer Gallery, Paris and New York (1927–sold 1928)]; William Randolph Hearst (American, 1863–1951), New York and San Simeon, CA (in 1928); International Studio Corporation(owned by William Randolph Hearst; sold 1940); [ Brummer Gallery, Paris and New York (1940–sold 1947)]
Valuable Egyptian, Greek and Roman Antiquities, Dec. 6 and 7. London: Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, December 1920. no. 342, p. 50, pl. VII.