Visitors to the Metropolitan Museum of Art can now view a rare, recently excavated silver dining set from the Roman region of Pompeii in addition to an equally rare Greek drinking cup exported to Rome during ancient times as part of an ongoing exchange between the museum and the Republic of Italy.
The Moregine Treasure. Photo courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
The silver dining set, which is known as the Moregine Treasure and dates to the first century A.D., is particularly rare - only three such sets are known to exist in the world. Buried during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79, the 20-piece set was only unearthed in 2000 at Moregine, in the outskirts of Pompei. But the set's story is possibly more interesting than the beautiful vessels themselves: all 20 pieces had been placed in a wicker basket and hidden in the basement of an unfinished public bath house during the volancanic eruption in Pompeii, presumably by an owner who died during the disaster.
The terracotta drinking cup, known as a kylix, is one of the most famous surviving works from the ancient republic of Sparta. It dates to between 575 and 560 B.C.
Both the dining set and cup will be on display in the museum's Galleries for Greek and Roman Art for the next four years. To learn more, click here.