a Roman artist, in the department of ornamental metal-work (caelatura
He was the maker of one of the most admired of cylindrical bronze caskets (cistae mysticae
), which are found in tons in Italy, containing paterae, mirrors, and utensils of the bath, such as strigils.
The greatest number of such caskets have been found at Praeneste, where some of them seem to have been laid up in the temple of Fortune, as votive offerings from women.
The one which bears the name of Plautius is beautifully engraved with subjects from the Argonautic expedition; a hunt is engraved round the lid, which is surmounted by three figures in bronze; and on the lid is the fol lowing inscription: on the one side, DINDIA. MACOLINA. FILEA. DEIT,--on the other, NOVIOS. PLAUTIOS. MED . (me) ROMAI . FECID. From the style of the workmanship and of the inscription, the date of the artist is supposed to be about A. U. 500, B. C. 254. (Winckelmann, Gesch. d. Kunst,
b. 8.4.7; Müller, Arch. d. Kunst,
§ 173, n. 4.)