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p579 Guttus

Unsigned article on p579 of

William Smith, D.C.L., LL.D.:
A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, John Murray, London, 1875.

An engraving of the obverse and reverse of a Roman coin, in each case showing a tall thin pitcher with a prominent handle. These pitchers are examples of the type known as 'guttus'.

GUTTUS, a vessel, with a narrow mouth or neck, from which the liquid was poured in drops: hence its name "Qui vinum dabant ut minutatim funderent, a guttis guttum appellarunt." (Varr. L. L. V.124, ed. Müller). It was especially used in sacrifices (Plin. H. N. XVI.38 s73), and hence we find it represented on the Roman coins struck by persons who held any of the priestly offices; as, for instance, in the annexed coin of L. Plancus, the contemporary of Augustus, where it appears, though in different forms, both on the obverse and reverse. The guttus was also used for keeping the oil, with which persons were anointed in the baths (Juv. III.263, XI.158). A guttus of this kind is figured on p192.


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Page updated: 1 Oct 06