Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Silver-gilt cup (one of a pair)

Late Classical or Hellenistic
4th–3rd century B.C.
Greek, South Italian
Silver, gold
H. 2 1/2 in. (6.3 cm); diameter 6 1/8 in. (15.5 cm); length including handles 9 5/8 in. (24.5 cm)
Gold and Silver
Credit Line:
Purchase, Patti Cadby Birch Gift, 1993
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 162
The cups are decorated on the interior with an outer band of gilding engraved with ivy leaves and tendrils and, within a star pattern, a central medallion depicting Dionysos, the god of wine, with his customary attribute, an ivy-tipped thyrsos (staff). Such decoration is highly appropriate for a pair of drinking cups. Unusually, their bowls were hammered from thin sheets of silver rather than cast, making them lightweight and easy to use.
Picón, Carlos A., Joan R. Mertens, Elizabeth J. Milleker, and Patricia Gilkison. 1994. "Recent Acquisitions, A Selection: 1993–1994." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 52(2): p. 13.

Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1994. "One Hundred Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the Trustees for the Fiscal Year July 1, 1993 through June 30, 1994." Annual Report of the Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 124: pp. 34-5.

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