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The Roman bronze basins of the Eggers 99–106 types discussed in this paper, the overwhelming majority of which was found in Pompeii, were quite widespread both in Free Germany and in the Roman provinces of Lower Moesia and Thrace, which were established in the fi rst half of the 1st century AD. The finds of such basins in Judea, Hadramaut and Western India indicate that they were also distributed in the Eastern Mediterranean and probably reached South Asia via sea route. The number of fi nds in Eastern Europe (33) exceeds the similar data for the territory of Germania magna (21) and Thrace (18 or 21). Noteworthy is the complete absence of finds of such basins or their handles in the ancient centers of the North Pontic coast and their geographical concentration in the burials of the nomads in the Lower Don and the Kuban regions, which can only be compared with a concentration of fi nds of such basins in Thrace.

These basins first appeared in Sarmatia not later than in the second half of the 1st century AD, while they are found in complexes dating from the second half of 1st to the fi rst half of the 3rd century AD. Perhaps such a long usage of some basins is an additional reason explaining the fact of complete or partial lack of handles and repair of some of them, which could be carried out both in the workshops of the nearest Bosporan centers, especially Tanais, and directly by the nomads.

With rare exceptions, in cases where the determination of the sex of the deceased is known, basins were found in male burials. In addition, in one case, fragments of the basin were found in the Burial-mound with a female burial among the rests of the funeral feast. We do not know how exactly the Sarmatians used these basins, but it is unlikely for their original purpose, as well as the Germans used them differently than the Romans. It is worth mentioning that in the burials of the nomads of Asian Sarmatia, large (33.5–38 cm in diameter) and very large (40–45 cm in diameter) basins dominated absolutely. At the same time, among the basins found in the Crimea, the North-Western Pontic area and in the Dnieper basin, small basins with a diameter of 25– 30 cm predominated, and in the Kuban basin there were both large and small basins. Most often, the basins were found with hammered jugs (Blechkanne), less often with strainers of the Eggers 160 type and ladles.

Compared with the distribution of other categories of Roman bronzeware, in particular the earlier casseroles of the fi rst half of the 1st century AD, one should note the extreme rarity of the fi nds of the basins both in the burial grounds of the South-Western Crimea, and in the Sarmatian burials of the Middle Dnieper area, as well as the absence of their finds in the South Urals and the Trans-Urals.


Roman bronze vessels, basins, Roman imports, Roman Empire, Germania magna, Thrace North Pontic area, Asian Sarmatia.

Mikhail Yu. Treister

German Archaeological Institute, Berlin, Germany

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