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Identification and Creation
Object Number
1932.56.95
Title
Terra Sigillata Plate with Stamp of Gelli(us)
Classification
Vessels
Work Type
vessel
Date
c. 15 BCE-50 CE
Places
Creation Place: Ancient & Byzantine World
Period
Roman Imperial period, Early
Culture
Roman
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/291878
Location
Level 3, Room 3700, Ancient Mediterranean and Middle Eastern Art, Roman Art
View this object's location on our interactive map
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Terracotta
Technique
Wheel-made
Dimensions
4.8 x Dia. 17.9 cm (1 7/8 x 7 1/16 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • signature: A left-facing planta pedis stamp on the inside of the bowl reads GELLI(US)
Provenance
Dr. Harris Kennedy, Milton, MA (by 1932), gift; to the Fogg Art Museum, 1932.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of Dr. Harris Kennedy, Class of 1894
Accession Year
1932
Object Number
1932.56.95
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
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Descriptions
Description
Wide mouthed bowl, walls that are almost perpendicular to its flat, wide base, and a bead rim (1). Deep red slip. The bowl is entirely intact. One wide line is inscribed just inside the rim of the bowl, running the entire circumference. Another line is inscribed around the circumference where the walls meet the inside base. In the middle of the base are multiple wheel marks, with one deeper incised circle towards the middle. The exterior of the bowl shows numerous wheel marks but has no decoration. The foot is perpendicular to the base of the bowl and has two small chips missing. The plate is decorated on the interior with a central stamp in the shape of a foot (planta pedis) bearing the maker's mark: "GELLI."

1. See a similarly shaped bowl in J.W. Hayes, Roman Pottery from the South Stoa at Corinth. Hesperia 42 (1973): 83.44.
Commentary
The planta pedis stamp type was introduced in the early first century CE (1). Because of the stamp's small size, names were often abbreviated (e.g. "Gellius" to "Gelli"). The GELLI stamp in this vessel designates the 'Gellius' workshop which was one of the most active throughout the Italian region from 15 BCE-50 CE (2).

1. Kenrick, in Elisabeth Ettinger, et. al. Conspectus Formarum Terrae Sigillatae Italico Modo Confectae (Bonn: Dr. Rudolf Habelt GMBH, 1990) p. 147-148.

2. For this stamp see Oxe, Comfort, Kenrick, Corpus Vasorum Arretinorum (Bonn: Dr. Rudolf Habelt GMBH, 2000) nos. 878-879, esp. 878.49-878.50;

Exhibition History

32Q: 3700 Roman, Harvard Art Museums, 11/16/2014 - 01/01/2050

Subjects and Contexts

Google Art Project

Roman Domestic Art

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