Archaeology | Capitals | Corinthian | Corinthian column capital | Artwork profile

White marble

Max. h. 49,5 cm; lower diam. 38 cm; max. w. abacus’ side 52 cm

First half of the III century AD


Corinthian column capital

Corinthian column capital characterized by several simplified features, patent in both the handling of the foliage and in the disappearance of some specific typological elements. The kalathos is dressed with two crowns of eight, properly separated acanthus leaves (h. of the first crown 14 cm; h. of the second crown 27 cm) split in five lobes with three points each; the leaves are characterized by a large midrib flanked by a pair of grooves, which open up into the upper lobes, by slightly curved tips, now broken, and by a rather flat arrangement which makes them cling around the kalathos (h. of the kalathos with rim 41 cm). There is a manifest flattening of the foliage, whose elements are divided by means of deep grooves and oval or triangular shaped drill holes, which imitate schematically and with very little naturalistic resemblance the voids separating the lobes. The second crown of acanthus leaves springs at the summit of the first crown.

The cauliculi are compressed by the adjacent leaves of the second row, from which they are however divided by a pair of side marks, their shafts have a single central ridge and they are topped by a thick band carved with a deep Y shaped indentation. From the calyxes of acanthus leaves spring helices and volutes, of which only some traces survive as they are almost completely broken away: shortened and compressed below the abacus, they are made of a flat strip. The capital is devoid of the stem supporting the abacus’ rosette and the abacus’ mouldings are fractured.

The absence of the stem supporting the abacus’ rosette and of its related calyx, the schematically rendered cauliculi with a single central ridge and with a partition from the leaves at the sides, as well as the use of the drill in an untidy handling of light and dark plays are all elements that suggest a dating to the first half of the III century AD, as confirmed by the comparison with some capitals from Ostia (Pensabene P., I capitelli, in Scavi di Ostia, vol. VII, Roma 1973, pp. 78-79, nn. 317-321, pp. 227; 238; Lupi L., s.v. Capitello corinzio, in Museo Nazionale Romano, vol. I, 2, pp. 43-44, n. 32).