were metal dishes (lances
) used by the Romans for serving up food at table.
Martial mentions them several times (2.43; 2.53; 6.94; 11.30; 14.97) as in
use by the wealthy, and specially notices mullet as being served upon them.
The derivation of the word, and the epithet flava
applied to them by Martial (2.43
, flava tegunt chrysegndeta mulli),
render it probable that these dishes were made of silver, and were adorned
(probably on the rim) with ornaments in relief, wrought in gold and attached
by means of soldering or riveting. Such ornaments (as explained under EMBLEMIA) were called emblemata
]. In the Origines
of Isidore of Seville (20.4.8) chrysendeta
are defined simply as gilded
vessels (vasa deaurata
they must originally have been something more than this, or they would not
have acquired the special name of “gold-inlaid” (chrysendeta,
). There is no good reason for
accepting the view of some commentators on Martial that chrysendeta
were vessels inlaid with precious stones.