- The Black-gloss Pottery from the Iron Age Site of San Felice, South Italy
- Mouseion: Journal of the Classical Association of Canada
- University of Toronto Press
- Volume 10, Number 2, 2010, LIV—Series III
- p. pp. 243-280
- View Citation
Of 1,257 fragments of black-gloss ware found in the surface survey of San Felice, 56 can be classified by type and (on visual evidence) by fabric. The earliest are drinking vessels—"Ionian" type cups and "Metapontine" skyphoi—in use in the sixth century BC. During the fifth century they gave way to new types mostly made in Metapontum or Tarentum in imitation of Attic forms, especially skyphoi and jugs suitable for use in the symposium. They illustrate the hellenization of the site in this period. "Salt cellars" used in banqueting are common from the late fifth to the beginning of the third century, and show significant typological development. Some other pieces straddle the turn of the fourth/third centuries, but the absence of types most typical of the third century suggests that occupation of the site came to an end around the end of the fourth or beginning of the third century BC. Since San Felice is likely to have been a dependency of Botromagno/Silvium, which was sacked by the Romans in 306 BC, it is probable that the site was abandoned as a consequence of this event. A few later sherds are likely to be casual scatter from the Roman villa below the scarp of the plateau. In addition to its contribution to the history of the late Iron Age in this area, the study is important for understanding the background to the foundation of the villa and of the village of Vagnari situated in the valley below it.