Phiale (shallow bowl) with Floral Pattern

Unidentified Artist6th century BCE - 4th century BCE

Harvard Art Museums

Harvard Art Museums
Cambridge, United States

Hammered from a single sheet of metal, this silver phiale (libation bowl) has a shallow central navel or omphalos and is decorated with a pattern of radiating petals or leaves and, inserted between them, 14 lobes rendered in repoussé. The tips of the petals split to form an arch above each lobe, and a small upside-down teardrop appears where they split, as if growing from a calyx of leaves. There is a centering mark on the undersaide of the omphalos, and there are fine horizontal striations especially on the exterior of the rim.

Black and brown patina with patches of green; crack in one lobe.


  • Title: Phiale (shallow bowl) with Floral Pattern
  • Creator: Unidentified Artist
  • Date: 6th century BCE - 4th century BCE
  • Technique: Hammered
  • Physical Dimensions: h4.7 cm
  • Period: Achaemenid period
  • Credit Line: Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Bequest of Frances L. Hofer
  • Creation Place: Iran/Asia/Ancient & Byzantine World
  • Type: Vessels
  • External Link: Harvard Art Museums
  • Medium: Silver

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