Drinking horn (rhyton) in the form of the head of a sea monster

Greek, South Italian
Late Classical or Early Hellenistic Period
about 330–310 B.C.

Place of Manufacture: Italy, Apulia ?


Height x length: 18.5 x 26.5 cm (7 5/16 x 10 7/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


Europe, The Ancient World



Horn-shaped vase with a handle that terminates in the head of a sea monster (ketos). A hole passes through the mouth of the ketos, permitting liquid to flow out of the vessel. The rhyton is white coated on the outside and black-glazed on the inside. The piece is unbroken but the tempera colors that were originally on the white ground have disappeared.


By 1999: with H.A.C. Kunst der Antike, Basel (Bernheimer and H.A.C. Galleries, Apollo und Dionysos: Meisterwerke der Antike und Gemalde Alter Meister [exhibition catalogue July 1999]); purchased from H.A.C. Kunst der Antike by Brian T. Aitken, Acanthus Gallery, 22 East 80th Street, New York, N.Y. 10021; purchased by MFA from Brian T. Aitken, Acanthus Gallery, December 15, 1999

Credit Line

Gift of Charles C. Perkins, Gift by contribution, Francis Bartlett Donation, Gift of Mrs. Samuel D. Warren, and Gift of W. S. Appleton, by exchange