- Museum number
Marble sepulchral chest of Agria Agathe
- Production date
- 100 (circa)
Height: 0.99 metres
Width: 0.70 metres
- Curator's comments
Cook 2013, nr. 184:
‘A sepulchral Cippus three feet three inches high; the front is ornamented in the upper part with a foliage, in which tigers are pursuing deer; at the bottom Venus is represented carried by Tritons, and attended by Genii; upon a projecting tablet in the center is the following inscription, and the whole is enclosed by two columns with twisted flutes. on the sides are griffins sitting upon pedestals – found at Ostia.
P ∙ OSTIENSIS ∙ THALLVS
TVTOR ∙ SEVIR ∙ AUG ∙ ET∙
AGRIA ∙ THRYPHOS∙HEREDES∙
B ∙ ET∙ SIBI∙ M∙’
The figure on the Triton is a Nereid rather than Venus, and the suggestion that the cippus was found at Ostia seems to be an inference from the text of the inscription. Townley’s statements that it was found there in 1765 (TY 10/3, fo. 34), and that it was found there by Hamilton in 1776 (First Townley Inventory, altars, etc. 2), are certainly wrong, since the cippus was known in Rome from the sixteenth century and was later in the Mattei collection.
Bought from Hamilton in 1776: offered first for 60 Scudi in a letter dated 21 August (TY 7/ 614), by 21 October the cippus was packed and ready to go, priced now in Sterling at £15 (TY 7/619), and by 24 November it was on its way (TY 7/621). The price is confirmed in TY 10/7, TY 10/5, TY 10/3 (fo. 34), and ‘Union Catalogue’ (fo. 21v), but given in error as £12 in TY 12/1.
probably beginning of II AD (Smith).
* Townley drawings 2010,5006.297.
- A. Venuti, Vetera Monumenta Matthaeiorum (Rome, 1779) III, pl. 57 and p. 112;
- Synopsis of the Contents of the British Museum (1808), VII.7;
- A. H. Smith, A Catalogue of Sculpture in the Department of Greek and Roman Antiquities, British Museum, Vol. III (London 1904), 341-2, no. 2350, fig. 52;
- W. Altmann, Die römischen Grabaltäre der Kaiserzeit (Berlin, 1905), 148, no. 170 (bibl.);
- C. Scheffer, Roman Cinerary Urns in Stockholm Collections. Medelhavsmuseet Memoir 6 (Stockholm, 1987), 82, 85, Table 3, no. 28;
- E. Casamassima and R. Rubinstein (eds.), Antiquarian Drawings from Dosio’s Roman Workshop. Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Firenze, N. A. 1159 (Milan, 1993), 28-9, no. 17 (notes on history and bibl.);
- CIL XIV, 290 (ET SIBI in another hand: Hübner; see also for early copyists).
Elsner, J. & Huskinson, J. (eds.) (2010) Life, Death and Representation: Some New Work on Roman Sarcophagi (de Gruyter), p. 38
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2011, Jun-Oct, South Korea, Ulsan Museum, Ulsan, 'Fantastic Creatures'.
2012, Jan-Apr, Hong Kong Museum of Art, 'Fantastic Creatures'
- Acquisition date
- Greek and Roman
- Registration number