Palette in rectangular shape - 909.34.7_1


Palette in rectangular shape

Geography: Undetermined site, Upper Egypt
Date: c. 3200-3000 BC
Period: Naqada III, Protodynastic Period
15.56 x 7.9 cm
Object number: 909.34.7
Not on view

Greywacke palettes, such as this small rectangular one, are among the most commonly found personal possessions in Predynastic graves. They were found in the graves of both men and women, frequently near the face. These palettes were used to grind minerals into a fine powder for use as eye paint. Malachite, an ore of copper, was most commonly used for mascara, while galena, an ore of lead, was commonly used as the eye-liner kohl. The top face is flat and smooth, while the lower surface is in four planes. The centre is a bit rough with one corner being chipped. The period of Naqada III is characterized by geometric shaped palettes (square and circular, as well as rectangular).


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