Nesting Bowl

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Object Name: 
Nesting Bowl
Place Made: 
Accession Number: 
2009.1.8 A
Overall H: 7.3 cm; Rim Diam: 11.8 cm, Th: 0.3 cm
Not on Display
Web Description: 
Apart from differences in size, the three bowls are virtually identical. They are said to have been found together, and presumably they were part of a set. While sets of Roman glass tableware are not unknown (the Museum has one example: see below), we are not aware of another set of nesting vessels. The other set of tableware at the Museum includes two cups (77.1.2C, D) that are not unlike the nesting bowls. A closer parallel—a cup of the same shape, decorated with horizontal grooves—appears in a wall painting from Herculaneum (one of the cities destroyed by the eruption of Vesuvius in A.D. 79), now in the Museo Archeologico Nazionale, Naples (8644). What is perhaps the closest parallel for the bowls, however, is a vessel in The British Museum, London (GR 1871.10-4.3). It has the same form, rather thick wall, and wheel-cut decoration, but it also has a pattern of applied blue blobs that places the object firmly in the fourth century. According to the vendor, the bowls were acquired, apparently in the 19th century, by members of a British family, and they remained in the family’s possession until recently. The cups from the Museum’s set of tableware are discussed in David Whitehouse, Roman Glass from The Corning Museum of Glass, v. 1, Corning: the museum, 1997, pp. 225–226, nos. 381 and 382. The vessel in The British Museum is published in Donald B. Harden and others, Glass of the Caesars, Milan: Olivetti, 1987, p. 113, no. 46.
Galliers-Pratt Family, Former Collection
Sheppard, Christopher (d. 2015), Source
Primary Description: 
Transparent pale green glass, with rare, very small bubbles; blown, wheel-cut. Roughly hemispherical cup. Rim flat, probably cracked off and ground; wall curves down and in and merges with rounded base. Decorated with three continuous horizontal wheel-cut grooves: just below rim, and at about one-third and just under two-thirds of distance from rim to base. Each groove is 0.3-0.6 cm wide and up to 0.2 cm deep, with smooth flat bottom.
The Corning Museum of Glass: Notable Acquisitions 2009 (2010) illustrated, pp. 8-9, #1; BIB# AI79879
The Corning Museum of Glass Annual Report 2009 (2010) illustrated, pp. 5, 30; BIB# AI86944