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Three marble vases and a sarcophagus. Etching by G.B. Piranesi, ca. 1770.

Piranesi, Giovanni Battista, 1720-1778.
[between 1768 and 1778]


Free to use with attribution CC BYCredit: Wellcome Collection
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The central vase is carved with a priest and worshippers sacrificing the suovetaurilia (a boar, a ram and a bull), and is placed on a sarcophagus guarded by winged sphinxes. The left vase is carved with two birds eating grapes or berries, and the right one with acanthus decoration. In another state of the print, the left vase is said to be the property of the landscape painter Hugh Dean ("Vaso antico di marmo esistente in Inghilterra presso Mr. Hugh Dean pittore di paesi"), and the right one in Piranesi's collection ("Vaso antico di marmo che si vede presso l'autore")


[Rome] : [publisher not identified], [between 1768 and 1778]

Physical description

1 print : etching ; platemark 53 x 39 cm


Vaso antico di marmo ornato di bassirilievi rappresentanti il sagrifizio di suovetaurilii ed altri ornamenti allusivi al sagrifizio. Si vede in Inghilterra presso sua Mylord Holland. A, B Vasi antichi di marmo esistenti fra le altre antichità dell'autore. A sua eccellenza Miledi Maria Fox in segno d'ossequio il cavalier G.B. Piranesi. Cavalier Piranesi inc.



  • Italian

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Three marble vases and a sarcophagus. Etching by G.B. Piranesi, ca. 1770. Credit: Wellcome Collection. CC BY

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