Michael Vickers jug

Presented to Jesus College Oxford on his retirement as Fellow, this water jug echoes a Roman original.

Michael Vickers has probably done more than anyone else alive to reassert the importance of precious metal in the ancient world. Following his pivotal work ‘Silver to Ceramic’, many hours were spent seeking Gareth’s opinion on the construction and decoration of ancient Greek ceramics, Michael’s theory being that they copy precious metal originals. 

In making this jug, using techniques little changed for two thousand years (including the ‘pricking’ of the inscription), questions as to how the Roman jug was used were raised. In common with many vessels of this period the foot of the Roman Jug finished at the smaller of the two rings. This meant that full of liquid it would have been prone to falling over. Our solution was to enlarge the foot to a practical size for a vessel left on a table, but imagining the possibility that the Roman jug never left the hands of the attendant serving, not a practical solution for those at Jesus College.