Facings for a Couch (Primary Title)

Unknown (Artist)

1st century BC- 1st century AD
These bone reliefs belonged to an elaborately decorated couch with an iron substructure and, probably, a wooden frame. Carbonization on a number of other pieces from the couch as well as parallels from burials suggest that this couch was included in the cremation of a wealthy Roman. These fragments show Dionysiac motifs such as a panther (an animal sacred to Dionysos) and wine jars; the erotes (named for Eros, god of desire) also bear torches pointed downward, a position associated with death. These funerary couches are similar to domestic ones and may have been used in the home prior to cremation.
Arthur and Margaret Glasgow Fund
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

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