VA·32 Golasecca

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Classification: pitcher

Material: pottery
Size: height 7.7 cm, mouth diam. 6.8 cm, foot diam. 3.3 cm
Condition: damaged
Autopsy by: Corinna Salomon
Date of autopsy: Apr 27 2022

Archaeological culture: Golasecca II B
Date: late 6th–early 5th c. BC
Date derived from: typology

Site: Golasecca (Varese, Lombardia, Italy)
Field name: Galliasco
Coordinates (approx.): 45° 42' 24.73" N, 8° 39' 52.36" E
Find date: before 1876
Find circumstances: excavation
Finder: Pompeo Castelfranco
Current location: Civico Museo Archeologico (Milano)
Inventory no.: A 0.9.28460

Inscription: VA·32 (???)

Alternative sigla: Solinas 1995: 114
Morandi 2004: 75

Sources: Morandi 2004: 571 no. 75



Small pitcher with stralucido glaze; the handle is broken off. The object was excavated by Castelfranco (Castelfranco 1876: 99) and is part of his collection in the Museo Archeologico Milano (no. 219). Gambari & Colonna 1988: 160, no. 1 give Castelletto sopra Ticino as find place, but the museum's records name the Galliasco, one of the sites of the Golasecca necropolis – this is doubtlessly correct, as Castelfranco's publication is about finds from the necropolis, where he excavated many similar objects with similar marks (Coll. Castelfranco 215–218, 220–222 = A 0.9.28453 (Golasecca necropolis), A 0.9.28482 (Galliasco), A 0.9.28484 (Galliasco), A 0.9.28481 (Presualdo), A 0.9.28457 (Monsorino), A 0.9.28447 (Monsorino), A 0.9.28455 (Monsorino); see the photos above and the inscription page). Cf. also VA·5 Golasecca, VA·4 Sesto Calende and NO·1 Castelletto sopra Ticino. Because of the mistake, the present object and inscription were originally assigned the LexLep siglum NO·2, changed to VA·32 in May 2022. On the foot of the vessel is incised a circle-shaped mark which is referred to as theta "crociato a doppia traversa" by Gambari & Colonna, but is also comparable to various St. Andrew's cross or asterisk-shaped marks on the feet of the aforementioned objects.

Corinna Salomon


Castelfranco 1876 Pompeo Castelfranco, "Due periodi della 1a Età del Ferro nella Necropoli di Golasecca", Bullettino di Paletnologia Italiana 2,1 (1876), 87–106.
Gambari & Colonna 1988 Filippo Maria Gambari, Giovanni Colonna, "Il bicchiere con iscrizione arcaica da Castelletto Ticino e l'adozione della scrittura nell'Italia nord-occidentale", Studi Etruschi 54 (1986 [1988]), 119–164.