Ancient, Xenon Ceramic Vessel, Magna Graecia, Italy (1368LME) $495


H: 3.125”  W: 3”  D: 2.875” | FREE SHIPPING!

This small 4th century BCE Xenon earthenware container has a single strap handle. Its body is decorated with orange painted designs of a continuous geometric meander, a band of tapering vertical lines above and a thin line around the body below it.


The name of this pottery type is comes from a vase in Frankfurt having the inscribed name of Xenon. It is recognized by its pale orange-red or salmon decoration over a black glazed earthenware body of fired red clay. It’s shape comes from the ancient Greek olpe, a leather flask for oils and liquids that evolved into a small pottery pitcher with a rim and no spout more useful for drinking than pouring. Wheel made in Apulia, this Greek colony in southeastern Italy was in a province of the Roman-Empire called Magna Gracia. Colonized by Greek city-states, it is was mentioned by the Roman poet Ovid in his poem Fasti. The settlers brought with them a Hellenic culture that greatly affected Italian civilization. There is some fading of the painted decoration and are minor chips in the black glaze at the rim and elsewhere revealing its red clay body. It is in very good condition for  its age of more than two millennia and has no discernable repairs or restorations.

Additional information

Place of Origin

Ancient Mediterranean


Ancient, Magna Gracia


4th Century B.C.E.

Materials and Technique


Dimensions (inches)

, Ht: 3.125” W: 3” D: 2.875”

Dimensions (metric)

Ht: 7.94cm W: 7.62cm D: 2.30cm




Very good, no repairs/restorations (see description).

Item Number