Globular black-topped redware jar with incised decoration

Classic Kerma
about 1700–1550 B.C.

Findspot: Nubia (Sudan), Kerma, Cemetery S, grave


Overall: 20 x 10 cm (7 7/8 x 3 15/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


The Ancient World



This globular black-topped redware jar has high shoulders, a rounded base, and a straight neck ending at a thin straight rim with a slight outward pull. Two bands of incised decoration of stippled lines are on the upper body. Around the rim is a band of alternating pairs of opposing, slanted lines, while th etop of the shoulders carries a band or irregular “x” hatches that form a zigzag pattern. The black top was attained by turning the jar over in the firing process to place the upper portion in an oxygen-reduced atmosphere of burning organics/ash.


From Kerma, Cemetery S, grave . 1914: excavated by the Harvard University–Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition; assigned to the MFA in the division of finds by the government of the Sudan.

(Accession date: July 12, 2006)

Credit Line

Harvard University–Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition