Roundel Fragment with Shepherd and Flock

Object Name: 
Roundel Fragment with Shepherd and Flock

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Object Name: 
Roundel Fragment with Shepherd and Flock
Place Made: 
Accession Number: 
Overall Diam (max): 9.7 cm
On Display
Web Description: 
Gold glasses were used in a variety of ways. In addition to medallions bearing portraits, they were made as roundels at the center of dishes and bowls. This example shows a shepherd tending his flock. The Latin inscriptions surrounding the scene are drinkers’ toasts that may be translated, “[Be] the pride of your friends; drink that you may live; may you live.” The shepherd and flock motif might initially incline the viewer to think that the inscription is a Christian exhortation. However, the shepherd is holding a panpipe, which is not a Christian symbol, and thus the medallion probably depicts a bucolic scene with no religious significance. Roundels similar to this one were displayed beside tombs in the catacombs, the underground galleries used by Jews and Christians for burying their dead.
Sangiorgi, Giorgio, Former Collection
Sangiorgi, Sergio, Source
Primary Description: 
Transparent pale green glass; gold leaf sandwiched between two sheets of glass. Roundel with low footring; two sheets of glass, edge of lower sheet folded to form base ring; decorated in gold leaf: rustic scene in two concentric circles which contain inscription; on right, shepherd, short-haired and beardless wearing girdled tunic and leggings, holding syrinx in both hands with crook leaning against right knee; to his right, tree, pollarded, with leafy branch; to his left, jar and three rams, in field, dots and five leaf sprays.
Picturing the Bible: The Earliest Christian Art
Kimbell Art Museum 2007-11-18 through 2008-03-30
Ambrose and Agustine: The Origins of Europe
Museo Diocesano 2003-11-01 through 2004-06-01
(exhibit title) Ambrogio e Agostino: Le sorgenti dell'Europe
Glass of the Caesars
British Museum 1987-11-18 through 1988-03-06
Romisch-Germanisches Museum 1988-04-15 through 1988-10-18
Musei Capitolini 1988-11-03 through 1989-01-31
Corning Museum of Glass
Age of Spirituality
Metropolitan Museum of Art 1977 through 1977
Glass: A Short History (Smithsonian Books edition) (2012) illustrated, pp. 40-41; BIB# 130360
Glass: A Short History (The British Museum edition) (2012) illustrated, pp. 40-41; BIB# 135965
Fire and Ice: Ancient Glass in the Princeton University Art Museum (2012) illustrated, p. 32, fig. 62;
The Yearning for Venetian Glass: Beauty that Traversed Oceans and Time (2011) illustrated, p. 18, fig. 3;
The illustrated encyclopedia of glass (2011) illustrated, p. 164; BIB# 128671
Picturing the Bible: The Earliest Christian Art (Kimbell Art Museum) (2007) illustrated, p. 192-193, fig. 22; BIB# 103158
Looking at Glass: A Guide to Terms, Styles and Techniques (2005) illustrated, p. 43; BIB# 99164
Studi di archeologia in memoria di Liliana Mercando (2005) illustrated, p. 171; BIB# 166832
The Gather (2004) illustrated, p. 7;
Antikes Glas (Handbuch der Archaologie) (2004) illustrated, p. 469 (Taf. 367); BIB# 83444
387 d.c./ambrogio e agostino/le sorgenti dell'europa (2003) illustrated, p. 323, no. 276; p. 429; BIB# 78110
The Art of Living (2001) p. 628;
Roman Glass in The Corning Museum of Glass, Volume Two (2001) cover, jacket ill.; pp. 249-250, pl. 842; BIB# 58895
Aurea Roma. Dalla citta pagana alla citta Cristiana (2000) illustrated, p. 628, cat. no. 332; BIB# 67277
Glass, Gold, and Gold-Glasses (1996) illustrated, p. 11, fig. 13;
Glass Of The Roman Empire (1988) illustrated, pp. 54-55, fig. 23; pp. 8-9; BIB# 32608
Glass of the Caesars (1987) illustrated, p. 286, #161; BIB# 31831
Roman Glass in The Corning Museum of Glass (postcards) (1987) illustrated, #23; BIB# 34348
Garasu Nyumon (Introduction to Glass) (1983) illustrated, p. 97; BIB# 32417
Story of Glass Coloring Book (1981) illustrated, p. 12; BIB# 67749