Other programs that calculate vessel capacity

Inspiration for writing Kotyle derived from other existing tools, that I didn’t find satisfactory for my purposes.


VESCAP (VESsel CAPacity) is a standardized procedure based on AutoCAD used together with the CAD Overlay plugin to digitize a raster drawing.

The main advantage of the VESCAP routine lies in avoiding the separation between the drawing of the potsherd and the geometric definition of the vessel profile. Both can be stored in the same CAD file, and the solid of revolution can be easily created. AutoCAD gives directly the volume of the solid, so the results are guaranteed correct.

VESCAP was published by James McCaw in 2007 [Peña07].

[Peña07]J. Theodore Peña, The quantitative analysis of Roman pottery: general problems, the methods employed at the Palatine East, and the supply of African Sigillata to Rome, in E. Papi (ed.) Supplying Rome and the Empire, pp. 153-172

ARCANE Pottery Utility

Far from being a magic tool, the Pottery Utility developed by the ARCANE Project is a dedicated stand-alone program devoted to measurements of pottery drawings and profiles of vessels.

However, the method it uses to calculate volume has a major flaw, because it assumes a monotonic profile, that is, a profile where the lowest point lies on the rotation axis. There are some cases where such a condition doesn’t hold.

Pottery Utility is based on Shockwave Flash.


There is a volume calculation program available from Amphoralex, the website of the Centre Alexandrin d’Étude des Amphores.

It appears to be based on FileMaker 5.

Calcul de capacité d’un récipient à partir de son profil

This is a web service developed by CReA (Centre de Recherches en Archéologie et Patrimoine).

Registration is needed.