Egypt, Late Dynastic Period, 26th to 31st Dynasty, ca. 664 to 332 BCE. A beautiful jar of a slender, cylindrical form with a flat base, tall walls, and a thick rim surrounding the deep basin. The vessel is hand-carved from honey-yellow alabaster with natural opaque white bands coursing throughout the stone matrix that illuminate when held next to a bright light. The interior has been gradually widened using a series of progressively finer drill bits and abrasive sand, and evidence of the original drilling striations are still visible within the interior cavity. Size: 3.125" W x 4.7" H (7.9 cm x 11.9 cm)
The Egyptians were master carvers and used the abundant stone deposits in the Nile Valley and the Eastern Sahara throughout their history to fashion sculptures, vessels, and monumental buildings. The perfect symmetry of this example demonstrates their skill. Alabaster vessels were often personal items, and were frequently buried with their owners.
Provenance: ex-private Quinn collection, Los Angeles, California, USA; ex-private London, England collection, acquired before 2000
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Repair to bottom section of vessel, with in-fill material in one small area, and very light adhesive residue along break lines. Minor abrasions to walls, base, and rim. Great surface smoothness throughout. Opaque bands illuminate when held next to a bright light.