Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
1977.216.2201.1
Title
Fork
Classification
Tools and Equipment
Work Type
fork
Date
1st-4th century CE or later
Places
Creation Place: Ancient & Byzantine World, Europe, Rome (Latium)
Period
Roman Imperial period
Culture
Roman
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/287344
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Bronze
Technique
Cast
Dimensions
14.7 x 1.6 cm (5 13/16 x 5/8 in.)
Technical Details

Technical Observations: The patina is grayish brown, and the object is well preserved; it is not clear if it is ancient. The fork bears a stamp, “A,” on the underside above the tines. It was made by casting the rough shape and then working to further shape the fork and to finish the surface.


Carol Snow (submitted 2002)

Provenance
"From Rome" according to Classical Collection index card; received as a gift of H.W. Bell on Feb. 2, 1911.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Transfer from the Department of the Classics, Harvard University, Gift of H. W. Bell
Accession Year
1977
Object Number
1977.216.2201.1
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
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Descriptions

Published Catalogue Text: Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Bronzes at the Harvard Art Museums
This fork has three sharp tines and an elaborately modeled handle. On the back above the middle tine, the letter “A” is stamped. This fork may not be ancient, although forks do occur in other ancient collections (1).

NOTES:

1. Compare G. Zampieri and B. Lavarone, eds., Bronzi antichi del Museo Archaeologico di Padova, exh. cat., Museo Archeologico Padova (Rome, 2000) 204-205, nos. 408.a-f; and S. Boucher and S. Tassinari, Bronzes antiques du Musée de la Civilisation Gallo-Romaine a Lyon 1: Inscriptions, statuaire, vaisselle (Lyon, 1976) 155, no. 205. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, has a copper alloy fork, inv. no. 47.107.1, of similar shape to the Harvard forks, although it has four tines and all of the Harvard forks have only three; see also an example at the Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, inv. no. 54.1447; and one in the Rhode Island School of Design, Museum of Art, Providence, inv. no. 07.149.


David Smart

Subjects and Contexts

Ancient Bronzes

Roman Domestic Art

Related Works

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu