Tall shouldered jar - ROM2018_16165_71


Tall shouldered jar

Medium:Nummulitic limestone
Geography: Undetermined site, Egypt
Date: c. 3100-2686 BC
Period: 1st-2nd Dynasty, Early Dynastic Period
22.2 x 12.4 cm
Object number: 909.80.153
On view
Gallery Location:Galleries of Africa: Egypt

In the early days of the Egyptian state, stone vessels were high status goods that may have been essential in elite burials. Both the stabilization of the state and the organization of official state workshops with trained personnel contributed to a feedback loop in which greater skill inspired better tools and better tools were a spur to more complex forms, and to the use of a variety of colours and textures of stone

The attractive pattern in the limestone of this vessel is due to the presence of hundreds of small round fossils called nummulites.  While adding to the beauty of the piece, their presence would have made the carving much more difficult, requiring great skill on the part of the carver.

The original contents, as well as the provenance, of this vessel are unknown.

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