Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Couch and footstool with bone carvings and glass inlays

1st–2nd century A.D.
Wood, bone, glass
41 1/2 × 30 × 84 1/2 in. (105.4 × 76.2 × 214.6 cm)
footstool: 9 1/4 × 17 1/2 × 25 1/2 in. (23.5 × 44.5 × 64.8 cm)
Miscellaneous-Bone, Ivory
Credit Line:
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 168
These pieces of furniture have been reassembled from fragments, some of which may come from the imperial villa of Lucius Verus (co-emperor, A.D. 161–169), on the Via Cassia outside Rome. It is not certain that the square glass panels are original to the bed frame and stool, but the carved bone inlays are paralleled on other Roman couches. On the couch legs are friezes of huntsmen, horses, and hounds flanking Ganymede, the handsome Trojan youth who was abducted by Zeus in the guise of an eagle to serve as his wine steward; on the footstool are scenes of winged cupids and leopards; and on the sides of the bed frame, the striking lion protomes have eyes inlaid with glass.
#1207. Couch and footstool with bone carvings and glass inlays
For Audio Guide tours and information, visit
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1926. Ancient Furniture: A History of Greek, Etruscan, and Roman Furniture. pp. 132, 136, fig. 313, Oxford: Clarendon Press.

Kern, J.H.C. 1956. "Zwei buntgefleckte Glaskelche des I Jhts. n. Chr. in Leiden." Archeologia Classica, 8: p. 199, fig. 32.

Cook, Brian. 1964. "The Boscoreale Cubiculum: A New Installation." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 22(5): p. 181.

Richter, Gisela M. A. 1966. The Furniture of the Greeks, Etruscans and Romans. pp. 105, 106, 108, fig. 520, 531, London: Phaidon Press.

Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC). 1986. Vol. 3: Atherion-Eros. "Dionysos," no. 125, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.

Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC). 1988. Vol. 4: Eros-Herakles. "Ganymedes," p. 165, no. 245, Zürich: Artemis Verlag.

Sagui, Lucia, B. Bacchelli, and R. Pasqualucci. 1996. "Un patrimonie unique au monde. Les verres de la collection Gorga." Annales du 13e Congrès de l'Association Internationale pour l'Histoire du Verre, Pays Bas 28 août-1 septembre 1995, Gioia Meconcelli, ed. pp. 222-3, figs. 8-9, Lochem: Association internationale pour l'histoire du verre.

Picón, Carlos A. 2007. Art of the Classical World in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Greece, Cyprus, Etruria, Rome. no. 446, pp. 380-81, 493, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Mattusch, Carol and et al. 2008. Pompeii and the Roman Villa: Art and Culture Around the Bay of Naples p. 37, fig. 3.4, New York: Thames and Hudson.

Campbell, Virginia L. 2017. Ancient Rome. p. 159, New York: Thames and Hudson.

Related Objects

Ivory furniture attachment

Artist: Date: early 1st century A.D.
Accession Number: 17.190.68
Date: early 1st century A.D. Medium: Ivory Accession: 17.190.68 On view in:Gallery 166

Ivory furniture attachment

Artist: Date: early 1st century A.D.
Accession Number: 17.190.70
Date: early 1st century A.D. Medium: Ivory Accession: 17.190.70 On view in:Gallery 166

Porphyry support for a water basin

Artist: Date: 2nd century A.D.
Accession Number: 1992.11.70
Date: 2nd century A.D. Medium: Porphyry Accession: 1992.11.70 On view in:Gallery 162

Bone lion's head protome with glass eyes

Artist: Date: 1st century A.D.
Accession Number: 2006.514.1
Date: 1st century A.D. Medium: bone and glass Accession: 2006.514.1 On view in:Gallery 168

Glass snake-thread flask shaped like a mouse

Artist: Date: 3rd century A.D.
Accession Number: 2012.479.2
Date: 3rd century A.D. Medium: Glass, blue Accession: 2012.479.2 On view in:Gallery 169