We continue our journey through the ABCs of the decorative arts today with a term that often appears in our description of antiques: patera. Patera is an architectural term for a circular or oval ornament that is often decorated with leaves or petals. Patera, and its plural paterae, appear in architectural decoration, often in a frieze, and on furniture patera frequently appear on a corner block. The patera design can be carved, incised, inlaid, or painted.
Have a look below for examples of furniture in our collection with paterae.