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Glass cup signed by Ennion

 

Height: 3.750 inches
Diameter: 5.300 inches

Cesnola Collection

GR 1876.11-14.4

Greece and Rome

    Glass cup signed by Ennion

    Roman, about AD 25-50
    Probably made at Sidon in Phoenicia (modern Lebanon); Found in a tomb at Tremithusa, Cyprus

    The first known maker of decorated mould-blown glass

    The cup was blown in a decorated mould that produced flutes on the lower half, and above Greek inscriptions with palmettes, concentric circles, and columns with a star between. The inscriptions translate as: 'Ennion made me' and 'let the buyer be remembered'.

    Ennion is one of four named makers of mould-blown glass from this period, and may have been the first, as examples of his work have been found in locations to the west of Sidon dating from the late AD 30s and 40s. His work is aesthetically pleasing, and includes a number of other drinking cups, as well as jugs and flasks with six sides.

    It has been suggested that Ennion's home was in Sidon, as two of his signed pieces come from there, though more have been found in Jerusalem. Nonetheless, Ennion's name seems to be a Greek version of a Semitic name, since it is not common in Greek, and 'let the buyer be remembered' was also a traditional Semitic greeting.

    E.M. Stern, The Toledo Museum of Art: Roma (Toledo, 1995)

    H. Tait (ed.), Five thousand years of glass-1, 2nd paperback edition (London, The British Museum Press, 1999)

    D.B. Harden and others, The British Museum: masterpiec (London, 1968)

    D. Harden (ed.), Glass of the Caesars, exh. cat. (London, The British Museum Press, 1988)

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