Small footed cup

Napatan Period, reign of Taharqa
690–664 B.C.

Findspot: Nubia (Sudan), Nuri, Pyramid 36 (Queen Atakhebasken), Room A


Overall: 7.8 x 7 cm (3 1/16 x 2 3/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


The Ancient World


Foundation deposits

This small, hand-made cup is fashioned of a coarse brownish clay fabric. The body consists of a small hemispherical cup. A stem extends downward to a very slightly splayed foot. The rim is unworked. Modeling is fairly rough.

Very small vessels such as this cup are common in grave, tomb, and temple contexts where they could be presented with offerings or as model offerings in and of themselves. They are thus often called “model vessels.” They are most often made of medium to coarse grades of clay, and shaping is often poor and irregular. Frequent irregularities or asymmetry in shaping reflect fast work and mass production.


From Nuri, Pyramid 36 (tomb of Queen Atakhebasken), Room A. 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: August 18, 2006)

Credit Line

Harvard University—Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition