a bowl either of wood or earthenware, apparently broad at
the bottom and narrowing towards the top, used for holding wine, but a cheap
ware for common wine (Pers. 5.148). It is said by Gellius (16.7
) to be a provincialism used by Laberius. From
13, it appears that it was used also at
funeral rites. The shape cannot be regarded as certain. Tertullian need not
be speaking precisely of the shape when he says, “Quid differt a
simpulo obba?” There is no clear proof for Rich's theory, that it
was pointed at the bottom, and in fact Persius's epithet sessilis,
i.e. squat or dumpy with a firm base, rather makes
against it: if the reading “obbatae
cassides,” in Apul. Met.
10.234, is correct, we are
none the wiser, since we cannot determine the shape of this particular
except by deciding that of the obba.
p. 654; Jahn, ad