Roman Amphorae: a digital resource

University of Southampton, 2005 (updated 2014)

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Resource identifiers

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University of Southampton (2014) Roman Amphorae: a digital resource [data-set]. York: Archaeology Data Service [distributor]

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Africana 1 Piccolo

Up to [Africana 2A Grande]

Distinctive Features

This is a medium-sized cylindrical amphora ("Africano piccolo" type of Zevi & Tchernia, 1969). It has a thickened, everted rim, convex on the outer face and flat or concave on the inside, with a short straight neck and small ear-shaped handles. There is a long cylindrical body with a short solid spike. There are two variants (Panella, 1973, 575-579; Keay, 1984, 100-101):
A : "a gently everted rim with a pronounced convex outer face and a flat inner face"
B : "a sharply concave inner rim face matched by a sharply convex outer rim face"
Occasionally stamped on the neck (rarely on the rim) with the initials of a tria nomina (generally with letters in relief) or a place name (generally with incised letters). Anepigraphic stamps (circles or half circles) are also attested.
See characteristics

Date Range

Second half of the second to the end of the third century AD? Later variants continue into the fourth century AD.
Search: [2nd century AD] [3rd century AD] [4th century AD]


Production is attested at Ariana near Carthage (Panella, 1982) and at a number of sites along or near the eastern coast at Hadrumetum, Leptiminus, Hr Ben Hassine, Sullecthum, Acholla, Thaenae, Nabeul and Oued el Akarit (Bonifay, 2004). Stamped pieces refer to Leptiminus, Hadrumetum, Thaenae (?) and Sullecthum (Zevi and Tchernia, 1969; Beltrán Lloris, 1970; Panella, 1973).
Search: [North Africa] [Tunisia]


Widely distributed in the western Mediterranean region, and particularly common at Rome and Ostia, but also reaching the eastern Mediterranean and Britain (Beltrán Lloris, 1970; Panella, 1973; Manacorda, 1977a who publishes a distribution map; Riley, 1979).
Search: [Eastern Mediterranean] [Great Britain] [Italy] [North Africa] [North West Europe] [The Balkans] [Western Mediterranean]


Olive oil (Panella, 1982, 174; Bonifay, 2004). Capacity 39-42 litres.
Search: [Olive Oil]


Principal contributor: Michel Bonifay


Beltrán 57
Keay 3
Ostia 4
Peacock & Williams 33


The following link will take you to the Centro para el Estudio de la Interdependencia Provincial en la Antiguedad Clásica CEIPAC database. In the CEIPAC system this amphora has the ID KE51+BYZ. Note: access to CEIPAC requires registration, which is possible via

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