One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A broad, shallow dish used in ancient Rome for pouring libations.
- ‘Originally, he may have been pouring a libation from a patera, as is common in similar sacrifice scenes belonging to this iconographic topos.’
- ‘The Bath patera can be seen in the Roman Baths Museum, and the Amiens patera in the Musée de Picardie-Amiens.’
- ‘The most exciting feature of the patera is the inscription.’
- ‘Other antiques included an enamelled patera that might have been anywhere between 100 and 150 years old when deposited, and glass vessels that had also seen long use.’
- 1.1Architecture A flat round ornament resembling a shallow dish.
2A broad, shallow bowl-shaped feature on the surface of a planet.
Latin, from patere ‘be or lie open’.
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