(On seeing an Italian jug in the University Museum)

The Adriatic shore of Italy across the sea from the Illyrian coast once saw the heyday of a pottery called Gnathia ware, Apulia’s ancient boast. It may be there a Grecian griffin went, cast in perpetual bronze. Such feral face, part bird, part snake, aggressive ornament immobilized with ibex on a vase or cauldron, jug or oriental tomb, recalls a gargoyle from whose vulture beak gush seasonal rains, while from this classic flume flowed wine to cool the throat of early Greek. Italian potters modelled myth and beast in handing down the spirit of the East.