Glossy Black Apulian Ceremonial Kylix


This ceremonial kylix is large and fairly shallow, with two small loop handles and a slightly raised foot. It is glazed in lustrous black gloss, with a circle left unpainted in the centre of the bowl, thereby creating a contrast between the red hue of the clay and the paint. The circle has been covered with a clear gloss, lending further vibrancy to its colour. The underside of the dish’s foot has also been left unpainted and unglazed, as have the interiors of the handles. The black glaze has a slight iridescence to it, suggesting that this dish was intended to imitate a metal platter.

Date: Circa 5th - 3rd Century BC
Condition: Fine condition; four chips to the rim; slight crack towards base of exterior; a few faint scratches to gloss.


SKU: SAS-002 Category: Tags: , , ,

This vessel is significantly larger than a standard kylix, and comparatively quite shallow, suggesting its use in a ceremonial context. Wine would have been sipped from this vessel as it was passed around, thereby emphasising the unity of the group.

The lustrous black gloss of this vessel indicates that it is from the Apulian region of southern Italy. Southern Italy was populated by a vast number of Greek colonies from the 8th Century BC onwards – so much so that the Romans referred to the area as Magna Graecia – ‘Great Greece’. These Greek colonies were instrumental in bringing Greek culture and thought to Italy, greatly influencing Roman literature, philosophy, and material culture in turn. Items from Apulia are characterised by the glossy black glaze covering the dish, and by polychromatic pigments of white, ochre, and maroon.

Weight 600 g
Dimensions W 31 x H 6.5 cm


Pottery and Porcelain