Bowl from a birth set with birth scene and Diana and Actaeon

Artist: Perhaps the "Milan Marsyas" Painter

Artist: In collaboration with Fra Xanto Avelli da Rovigo (ca. 1486–1582)

Date: ca. 1530–32

Culture: Italian, Urbino

Medium: Maiolica (tin-glazed earthenware)

Dimensions: Overall: 3 3/4 × 7 1/8 in. (9.5 × 18.1 cm)

Classification: Ceramics-Pottery

Credit Line: Samuel D. Lee Fund, 1941

Accession Number: 41.49.2


This footed bowl originally formed the base of a birth set—a series of nesting bowls and dishes celebrating childbirth. Only when the set was disassembled would the domestic image on its interior be revealed. Here, a new mother appears in her bedchamber together with her infant and two companions. The exterior decoration depicts the unfortunate hunter Actaeon, who was turned into a stag by the goddess Diana.