Roman Amphorae: a digital resource

University of Southampton, 2005 (updated 2014)

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Dr David Williams
Dept of Archaeology
University of Southampton
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SO17 1BJ
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University of Southampton (2014) Roman Amphorae: a digital resource [data-set]. York: Archaeology Data Service [distributor]

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Agora M273

No thin sections available

Samos Cistern Type fabric

Visual characteristics

The colour varies quite substantially from pale brown to dark red-brown or greyish, and can be relatively soft to very hard. This suggests the possibility of various production sites, though may equally reflect varying firing conditions. A sherd from the Castello di Udine examined by Williams (1990) was in a hard, rather smooth and somewhat micaceous fabric. The visual similarity of some micaceous examples to Late Roman Amphora 3, has suggested a lower Maeander Valley provenance to some scholars. Other examples have less evident mica.


The example from Udine reveals frequent flecks of mica, nostly muscovite, and well-sorted subangular grains of monocrystalline quartz, together with monocrystalline limestone, or voids which often contained such material, some iron oxides and the odd grain of plagioclase felspar. This fabric is virtually identical to previous thin section work on Samos cistern type carried out by the writer on samples from Carminiello ai Mannesi in Naples (Williams, 1990).


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