Stirrup jar with painted decoration - ROM2018_16324_29


Stirrup jar with painted decoration

Medium:Ceramic (earthenware), wheel-made
Geography: Greek import to Egypt?
Date: c. 1550-1069 BC
Period: Mycenaean (Late Helladic) Period
13 × 12.7 cm
Object number: 910.85.23
On view
Gallery Location:Galleries of Africa: Egypt
DescriptionGlobular stirrup jar. The shape takes its name from the configuration of the false neck and the two opposing handles, thought to resemble a stirrup. This peculiar configuration makes it possible to stop the flow of liquid from the spout with one's thumb, while at the same time controlling the vessel by the handles attached to the neck of the vessel.  This type of vessel was made in Greece, most likely in the region of Mycenae. Imitations were made in Egypt and other places, such as Cyprus. Numerous examples have been found in New Kingdom Egyptian sites, for example at Abydos, Amarna and Gurob. They are indicative of an ongoing trade between Egypt and Mycenaean Greece. The stirrup jars would have originally contained precious liquids, such as perfume or scented oil; it has been even suggested they may have contained opium used for medicinal purposes. The body of the vessel is decorated with horizontal black bands of varying width. At the midpoint of the body are intermittent double wavy-line decorations.
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