Egyptian / Bowl with Human Feet / ca. 3750-3550 B.C.E.Egyptian
Bowl with Human Feet
ca. 3750-3550 B.C.E.

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Creator Nationality: African; North African; Egyptian
Creator Name-CRT: Egyptian
Title: Bowl with Human Feet
Title Type: Object name
View: Bottom view
Creation Start Date: -375
Creation End Date: -355
Creation Date: ca. 3750-3550 B.C.E.
Object Type: Decorative Arts and Utilitarian Objects
Classification Term: Vessels
Materials and Techniques: ceramic
Dimensions: H. 3 7/8 in. (9.8 cm), Diam. 6 in. (15.3 cm)
AMICA Contributor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: New York, New York, USA
ID Number: 10.176.113
Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1910

In the Predynastic Period, potters created a wide variety of ceramic vessels with bowls; one unusual type has supports shaped like human feet. This example, made from Nile clay, is a simple round bowl tipped slightly forward as if to offer its contents. The two molded and shaped pieces representing human feet are solidly attached to the bowl's underside. The vessel's surface was smoothed, slipped, and polished, giving it a light sheen. The bowl standing on feet is very similar to the Egyptian hieroglyph meaning 'to bring.' Since none of the known bowls comes from a well-understood context, archaeologists cannot interpret their original use. Perhaps vessels like this were placed above the tomb to present offerings from the living to the deceased, a practice that was an established part of funerary ritual in Pharaonic Egypt, or possibly they held offerings in a shrine to a deity.

AMICA ID: MMA_.10.176.113
AMICA Library Year: 2000
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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