PERIOD: c. 575 BC
DIMENSIONS: Diameter 10.5 cm, height 7.5 cm and 15.5 cm between handles.
PRICE: 1,800 Euros
PROVENANCE: Collection of Jacques and Janine Nabon, Blois, France, established in the 1970s.
CONDITION: In a good state of preservation. One side has been restored from original fragments. The other side is intact.
Greek vessel decorated over the outer surface and base, and with the inner surface painted in black. Three horizontal registers encircle the vessel. In the central one three animals are represented: a panther confronting a goat, and behind each animal, separated from these by rosettes, we can see a swan. Using mainly an earthy black colour, the artist has also played with a maroon colour to suggest volume, and has made incisions for facial detail and to give definition to the anatomy of the beasts. This type of decoration is characteristic of the Corinthian style.
Rays extend upwards from the base to touch the three horizontal lines that border the lower limit of the central register. Three lines also border this register, separating it from the upper one which extends to the rim of the vessel and is decorated with short black vertical lines.
The skyphos is one type of vase-form, used as a drinking cup for wine. It is deep with thin walls, two handles and a low, wide base. Examples have been found without a base. The handles are small and horizontal, projecting from the rim, or they may be loop handles at the rim or that stand away from the lower part of the body. Skyphoi of the type called glaux (owl) have one horizontal and one vertical thumb-hold handle. The oldest examples come from the Geometric Period. Skyphoi were also made from precious metals such as gold and silver. Pieces like the vessel in question were exported in great quantities during the 6th Century BC to other areas in Greece, to the East or the south of the Italic peninsula.