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Currently shown
Peintre d'Herzégovine

Alabastron: Bucranium and Water Birds

Artist

Peintre d'Herzégovine
Active in Corinth, Greece, 575-550 B.C.E.

Title

Alabastron: Bucranium and Water Birds

Materials

Earthenware, painted and incised decoration

Dimensions

20.2 cm (h.), 9.7 cm (diam.)

Credits

Gift of F. Cleveland Morgan, inv. 1925.Cb.2

Collection

Archeology and World Cultures

Corinth, located on the isthmus linking Peloponnese and Attica, had access to both the Adriatic to the west and the Aegean to the east. During the seventh and sixth centuries B.C.E., it was the main pottery production centre of the Greek world. Corinthian relations with the Near East are considered to have been a stimulus for the development of the animal and plant motifs, especially rosettes, on Corinthian pottery. Small alabastra such as this one were used to hold scented oil. Their narrow neck helped control the flow of the precious liquid, usually olive oil infused with aromatic plants such as rose, sage, coriander or pomegranate. Corinthian alabastra were widely exported and inspired local versions, in particular among the Etruscans in central Italy.

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