When Thomas Jefferson went looking for the perfect gift for his friend, architect Charles-Louis Clèrisseau, he found inspiration in the form of a Roman askos discovered at the ruins of Nîmes. Jefferson first commissioned a wooden model of this pouring vessel, and then later a silver model that the Jefferson family called “the silver duck” and used as a chocolate pot at Monticello. In this episode of Object Stories, Associate Curator Emilie Johnson gives us the backstory on the askos vessels owned (and gifted) by Jefferson.

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