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Identification and Creation
Object Number
1977.216.154
Title
Stamped Amphora Handle
Classification
Vessels
Work Type
handle
Date
160-220 CE
Places
Creation Place: Ancient & Byzantine World, Europe, Hispania
Period
Roman Imperial period, Middle
Culture
Roman
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/287834
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Terracotta
Technique
Stamped
Dimensions
12.7 cm (5 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • collector's mark: TA ligature (A with top stroke of T above) in ink = Thomas Ashby
  • stamp and inscription: LIVNIM / ELISSI
Provenance
From Monte Testaccio, acquired; by George J. Pfeiffer and Rachel Hartwell Pfeiffer, Cambridge, MA (by 1905), gift; to the Department of the Classics, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (1905-1977), transfer; to the Fogg Museum, 1977.
Transfer from Department of the Classics, 1977.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Transfer from the Department of the Classics, Harvard University, Gift of Pfeiffer-Hartwell Collection
Accession Year
1977
Object Number
1977.216.154
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
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Descriptions
Description
The amphora stamps of the Melissi family are found all over the western Mediterranean, in such frequency and extent as to suggest that they must have been one of the wealthiest and most productive families in Spain. The distribution of stamps of L. Iunius Melissus range from the 160s through the early part of the 3rd century CE, to judge from the find-spots of stamps in Monte Testaccio. He seems to have inherited the business from the two Melissi (husband and wife, or brother and sister) who stamped their handles as II IVN. MELISSI ET MELISS(a)E, and was probably the son of both or one of them; the museum has a copy of that stamp (1977.216.3037).
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