Santa Maria in Aracoeli (Rome)

Lead-Glazed Ware - S. Maria in Aracoeli
Lead-Glazed Ware – S. Maria in Aracoeli

ARCHAEOLOGIAE XVIII. 1-2, 2020, 11-80 (Martin, Cuyler, Banducci 2020)


The material comes from an excavation carried out by Frank Brown in 1963, for which very little
information survives. Indeed, the selected ceramic finds, without any indications of context,
stored at the American Academy in Rome constitute the main attestation of it.

The larger part …..

With this publication, our intention was to go as far as possible in paying a debt owed to the
scholarly community by presenting what can now be said about this excavation. We hope also to
provide pottery specialists an assemblage that may offer useful comparanda for other sites at
Rome and a discussion of wares and types at times not well known there.

In this Addendum:
The table of contents of the article, along with author attributions, have been included for easy
reference. (pages 2-4).
As Archaeologiae does not publish in color, color photographs are given here of the finds
published there in black-and-white (pages 5-23).
Images are also presented of the fabrics of those wares that are not already well known in the
literature (pages 24-61).
Finally, there is an errata corrige (page 62).

An Intensive Pottery Survey at Çandarlı (Ancient Pitane)

Eastern Sigillata from Çandarlı
Eastern Sigillata from Çandarlı

Dear Colleagues,

We happily inform you on an intensive survey at Çandarlı (ancient Pitane) where in 1911 Siegfried Loeschcke (Athenische-Mitteilungen 1912__p0360-0423) discovered evidence of what turned out to be the very first archaeologically attested production centre of terra sigillata in the Eastern Mediterranean. The Pitane Survey (2019-2020) is part of the larger regional TransPergMikro project (, which is funded by the German Science Foundation and directed by the Istanbul branch of the German Archaeological Institute, the Free University in Berlin, the Technical University in Berlin, the Celal Bayar University in Manisa, and the Christian-Albrechts-University in Kiel.

Siegfried Loeschcke to Howard Comfort, 16 April 1934

Postcard Siegried Loeschcke to Howard Comfort 16 April 1934

Amongst the correspondence of Howard Comfort, which was entrusted to me by his daughter after his death in 1993, is the postcard reproduced here, and which I thought might be of interest as a brief exchange between familiar ceramologists.

The card reads:

“Sehr geehrter Herr Kollege !

“Sonderdrucke der erbetenen Artikel kann ich Ihnen leider nicht mehr zusenden. Vielleicht können Sie aber beim Provinzialmuseum die betreffenden Hefte aus den Jahrgängen der Zeitschriften erwerben. Ebenso im Museum von Haltern in Westfalen den großen Aufsatz über augusteische Keramik mit vielen Tafeln (Westfäl. Mitteilungen Band V). Als kleines Geschenk überreiche ich Ihnen “Tonindustrie von Speicher”. Für Zusendung Ihres Artikels in Mem. of the Am. Acad. i. Rome wäre ich Ihnen dankbar, da er hier nicht vorhanden ist.


S. Loeschcke”

Esteemed Colleague!

Unfortunately, I am no longer able to send you the article you asked for.[1] You may however be able to obtain the relevant volume of the journal from the Provinzialmuseum. Likewise in the Haltern Museum in Westphalia the long essay on Augustan pottery with many plates (Westfälische Mitteilungen vol. V).[2] As a small present I am sending you “The pottery industry of Speicher.”[3] I would be very grateful if you would send me your article in the Memoirs of the American Academy in Rome,[4] as it is not available here.

Yours respectfully,

S. Loeschcke

Readers will note that the postcard itself is an advertisement for Loeschcke’s work, Lampen aus Vindonissa.

The postmarks are interesting. First of all, the German one (Trier 16.4.34) includes the motto “Luftschutz ist nationale Pflicht. Werdet Mitglied im Reichsluftschutzbund” (Air raid protection is a national duty. Become a member of the Imperial Air Raid Federation).  Then, since Loeschcke had written a minimal address, without ‘U.S.A.’, the postcard was sent (inventively) to Haverfordwest in Pembrokeshire, Wales, where (only three days later) ‘U.S.A.’ was added, presumably by the postmaster who stamped the card again – and it evidently then reached its destination!

Years later, Howard went to visit Felix Oswald, who lived at Solva, very close to Haverfordwest, and he took photographs of the sign at the entrance to the town and of the town post office.

(I am grateful to Susanne Zabehlicky-Scheffenegger for help in deciphering a few of the more difficult words!)

Philip Kenrick

[1] I do not know what HC was asking for: possibly one of the annual reports of the Trier Museum.

[2] Loeschcke’s major work on ‘Keramische Funde aus Haltern’, in Mitteilungen der Altertumskommission für Westfalen 5 (1909)

[3] ‘Tonindustrie von Speicher und Umgebung’, an article published in Trierische Heimatblätter 1 (1922).

[4] ‘De collectione praecipue epigraphica vasculorum arretinorum apud Academiam Americanam conservata,’ Memoirs of the American Academy in Rome 7 (1929) 177–219.


Ceramic workshops in the Roman world

A research project proposal

TS workshop unit at Rheinzabern
TS workshop unit at Rheinzabern
(after Hissnauer, Werkstattbereich 3. Jh. [2014])
Dear Colleagues,

Bearing in mind the many detailed comments to the post “Clay preparation units” we are delighted to present to you our idea for a research project concerning the infrastructure of the Roman ceramic workshops. The aim of this project is to study in detail the various production facilities used for the manufacture of ceramic items throughout the Empire.

Our proposition is to divide the possible research topics into three groups in accordance with the specific type of information which is to be gathered and analysed.

Chi conosce questo bollo in planta pedis

Planta pedis stamp on TS from Tremona
Planta pedis stamp on TS from Tremona-Castello

Durante la scorsa campagna di scavo sul sito multiperiodico di Tremona-Castello (Canton Ticino, Svizzera) sono stati rivenuti frammenti pertinenti a un piatto purtroppo mancante dell’ orlo.

TS from Tremona with planta pedis stamp - Profile
TS from Tremona-Castello with planta pedis stamp – Profile

Il contesto di ritrovamento non è finora databile con precisione, ma potrebbe essere posteriore all’ epoca romana. Si tratta molto probabilmente di una produzione padana, di cui non si conserva neppure il rivestimento.

TS with Planta pedis from Tremona
TS with Planta pedis from Tremona-Castello

Il bollo risulta di difficile lettura e per esso non mi è stato possibile trovare alcun parallelo.

Lo sottopongo all’ attenzione dei colleghi, sperando che qualcuno possa fornirmi qualche informazione in merito.

Christiane De Micheli Schulthess

Zur Abfolge der ersten Dekorationsserien der Reliefsigillata-Töpfer in Rheinzabern

Mit 3 Beilagen (A – C)

Von Friedrich-Karl Bittner


Ricken 1942, Taf. 10,6
Ricken 1942, Taf. 10,6


Based on various criteria (especially the use and sequence of the ovolos, regarded as a control function within the manufactory), F.-K. Bittner tries to rearrange the sequence of the decoration series within the Rheinzabern mould-made sigillata, unfortunately presented by Heinrich Ricken without justification. Bittner divides the production in Rheinzabern into potter’s generations, of which the first two are treated here. In the center of the interest are the positions of Cobnertus I and III and Reginus I. The attached lists of figure types facilitate the traceability of Bittner’s proposals.

 Auf Grund verschiedener Kriterien (besonders der Verwendung und Abfolge der Eierstäbe, die als Kontrollfunktion innerhalb der Manufakturen angesehen werden) versucht F.-K. Bittner eine Neuordnung der von H. Ricken leider ohne Begründung vorgelegten Abfolge der Dekorationsserien der Reliefsigillata-Töpfer in Rheinzabern. Bittner teilt die Produktion in Rheinzabern in Töpfergenerationen ein, von welchen hier die ersten beiden behandelt werden. Im Zentrum des Interesses stehen die Positionen von Cobnertus I und III und Reginus I. Die beigefügten Punzenlisten erleichtern die Nachvollziehbarkeit der Vorschläge Bittners.

Clay preparation units

Rheinzabern 1975-77. Pit with clay ready for use.
Rheinzabern 1975-77. Pit with clay ready for use.

Dear Colleagues,

I am working on a topic, related to the clay preparation in the Roman period. I am trying to collect evidence for the different facilities in use during this process and the proofs of their presence in the ceramic workshops. I found some basic information in Peacock’s work on Roman pottery (Peacock 1982), and data for excavated structures in for example Pergamon, Sagalassos, Rheinzabern (see Poblome et al. 2001, Reutti 1983) etc. Unfortunately, I was unable to find publications with more specific information for the general layout of these facilities in the ceramic workshops and the exact way they were used. My goal is to find the differences in the layout and operation of the structures, used for clay settling, levigation, sedimentation and any other process related to the preparation of the raw material, together with the distinctive traces they leave in the archaeological record. I would be gratefull if someone could help me with bibliographical references or personal experience in this matter.

Best regards,
A. Harizanov


Peacock 1982: D. P. S. Peacock. Pottery in the Roman World: an ethnoarchaeological approach. – Longman, London, 1982.
Poblome et al. 2001: J. Poblome, O. Bounegtru, P. Degryse, W. Viaene, M. Waelkens, S. Erdemgil. The sigillata manufactories of Pergamon and Sagalassos. – JRA, 14, 2001, 143-166.
Reutti 1983: F. Reutti. Tonverarbeitende Industrie im römischen Rheinzabern. – In: Germania, 61, 1. Halbband, 1983, 33-69

Parallel of a kiln construction

Kilns near Montana, Bulgaria
Kilns near Montana, Bulgaria

Dear Colleаgues,

I am looking for a parallel of this kiln construction, excavated in the territory of Bulgaria. The structure was discovered in a Roman villa rustica, dated to the second half of the 2nd – third quarter of the 4th c. AD (Aleksandrov 1983, 72-75). The site was situated near the the modern day (and also the Roman) town of Montana (in the Roman provinces of Moesia Inferior/Dacia Mediterrranea).
The construction comprised four two-chambered structures (two with perforated and two with solid intermediate floors) connected by a long praefurnium (image – Aleksandrov 1983, p. 60). The fire was ignited into the lower chamber of the largest structure from where the hot air was transfered to the other three parts of this facility (Aleksandrov 1983, 60-61).

Tools used for the production and decoration of roman pottery

Dear colleagues,

I was wondering if someone knows and can recommend me bibliography on tools (made in various materials) that are used in the production and decoration of roman pottery which can be found in (and around) pottery workshops. I’m especially interested  in tools that were used in decorating vessels (such as tools for the making of incised decoration, and other).

Thank You in advance for Your replies!