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Crater

Name (also crater, kratér, mixing jug) for a bulbous wine vessel used in ancient Greece in the shape of a bell or jug with a wide protruding mouth at the top. These vessels were made of clay or bronze and decorated with reliefs and paintings. Most of them were 30 to 45 centimetres high and had a volume of around 50 to 100 litres. The first of the many artefacts found date back to the 10th century BC. The vessel was used to mix wine with water, a common practice at the time. It was regularly used at symposia (drinking parties with controlled consumption of wine), which is attested to by scenes on Greek vase paintings. It was placed on the ground next to the guests. The wine was then poured from the crater into the smaller oinochos (chous, olpe) and from there into handy drinking vessels such as kantharos.

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