The Romans had a taste for luxury tableware made from semi-precious stone, typically members of the quartz family including rock crystal, chalcedony and, as here, banded agate. The stone may have been quarried in India, and traded to the west to Egypt, where vessels were fashioned before being shipped elsewhere in the empire. For a cup of nearly identical form and material, found at Herculaneum, see no. 1, p. 63, in Guzzo, ed., Tales from an Eruption, Pompeii, Herculaneum, Oplontis. For a shallow banded agate vessel of different form, but with similar moldings below the rim and at the foot, see the example in the J. Paul Getty Museum, accession no. 72.AI.38. For another cup, more rounded but also with raised moldings, see no. 97 in Bühler, Antike Gefaße aus Edelsteinen.