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Great dish from the Mildenhall treasure
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The Mildenhall treasure is one of the most important collections of late-Roman silver tableware from anywhere in the Roman empire. Although no coins were found to give a reliable date, the tableware’s style and decoration is typical of the fourth century ad. The artistic and technical quality of the objects is outstanding, and they probably belonged to someone of considerable wealth and status.

This large platter, known as the ‘Great dish’, or the ‘Neptune’ or ‘Oceanus dish’, is the most famous object from the hoard. It is decorated in low relief and engraved line with designs alluding to the worship and mythology of Bacchus. The central face represents Oceanus, the personification of the oceans. The wide outer frieze features Bacchus presiding over a celebration of music, dancing and drinking in his honour. The participants include the hero Hercules, overcome by the consumption of wine, Pan, and various satyrs and female devotees of Bacchus.

Great dish from the Mildenhall treasure

Found in Mildenhall, Suffolk, 4th century ad
D. 60.5 cm
Wt 8256 g
Treasure Trove

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