Amphora with applied decoration and lid
New Kingdom, late Dynasty 18
Place of Origin: Egypt
Height x diameter of rim: 62 x 21 cm (24 7/16 x 8 1/4 in.)
Medium or Technique
Pottery, Nile silt ware
Egyptian New Kingdom Gallery (Gallery 210)
In the late Eighteenth Dynasty a new type of painted pottery was introduced, characterized by the use of cobalt blue. Because many examples have been found at the residences of Amenhotep III and Akhenaten at Thebes and el-Amarna, it is sometimes known as palace ware. This jar is particularly large and ornate with painted, incised, and applied decoration. The volute handles, resembling those on later Greek vases, are unusual in Egyptian art and may be attributed to foreign influence. The jar has a distinct front and back and was probably intended primarily for display in a niche, although it also could have served as a wine jar on festive occasions. The lid is crowned with a recumbent calf while grapes hang below the rim. On the vessel’s shoulder, a newborn ibex struggles to rise, its head raised up proudly to confront the viewer. Implicit in the young animals is the message of rejuvenation and rebirth.
By 1964: Paul Mallon collection, Paris; 1964: purchased by the MFA from Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mallon.
(Accession Date: January 8, 1964)
John H. and Ernestine A. Payne Fund