A Perfect Circle: Celebrate Pi Day

Today is March 14, 2015 - 3.14.15 - the closest we will get this century to our date reflecting "Pi" (π in Greek), the mathematical constant. Signifiying the ratio of a circle's circumfrence to its diameter, we are bringing you a few objects from the Cleveland Museum of Art's collection that are have circumfrences of their own: circular objects. Take a look at the selection below, enjoy a number of them on view at the museum currently, and share your favorites in the comments below. Happy Pi Day!


Circular Enamel Plaque with Figure of Ecclesia (?), 16th century. France, style of Limoges, style of 16th century. Enamel on copper; mounted on molded brass frame, Diameter - w:17.90 cm (w:7 inches). Gift of George H. Worthington 1969.256. 

Rondache (Round Shield), c. 1570. Italy, Milan, 16th century. Etched and gilded steel with brass rivets, Diameter - w:57.80 cm (w:22 3/4 inches) Wt: 4.10 kg. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. John L. Severance 1916.1504.

Round Dish, 1920-1930. Austria, 20th century. Enamel, Diameter - h:5.46 w:22.65 cm (h:2 1/8 w:8 7/8 inches). Educational Purchase Fund 1930.482.

Heraldic Roundel, 1500s. England, 16th century. Pot-metal and white glass, silver stain, Diameter - h:27.70 cm (h:10 7/8 inches). Gift of William G. Mather 1948.132.


Rest on the Flight into Egypt, 1624. Guercino (Italian, 1591-1666). Oil on canvas, Framed - h:95.90 w:96.60 d:10.80 cm (h:37 3/4 w:38 d:4 1/4 inches). Diameter - w:68.50 cm (w:26 15/16 inches). Mr. and Mrs. William H. Marlatt Fund 1967.123.


Circular Segmentum with Eight-Pointed Star and Bird, 600s - 700s. Egypt, 7th - 8th century. Tapestry (originally inwoven in tabby ground); linen and wool, Overall - h:11.50 w:10.50 cm (h:4 1/2 w:4 1/8 inches). Andrew R. and Martha Holden Jennings Fund 1982.376.

 Mirror with Six Circular Flowers, 600s. China, Tang dynasty (618-907). Bronze, Diameter - w:16.60 cm (w:6 1/2 inches) Wt: 833 g. Overall - h:1.50 cm (h:9/16 inches). Rim - h:0.90 cm (h:5/16 inches). Gift of Drs. Thomas and Martha Carter in Honor of Sherman E. Lee 1995.341.

Circular Dish with Tall Base: Kutani Ware, late 19th Century. Japan, Edo period (1615-1868). Porcelain with underglaze blue and overglaze enamel decoration, Diameter - w:23.70 cm (w:9 5/16 inches). Overall - h:6.40 cm (h:2 1/2 inches). Bequest of Gordon K. Mott 1998.288. 



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