Ancient Greece, Mycenaean, Late Helladic III, ca. 1400 to 1300 BCE. An elegant wheel-thrown pottery jar known as a pithos with a petite discoid base, a gradually-expanding stem, an inverted piriform body with a sloped shoulder, a squat neck with a projecting rim that perhaps held a lid at one time, and a trio of applied loop handles spaced equidistantly around the shoulder. Attractive red-brown slip is applied atop the cream-slipped ground in concentric rings of varying widths around the foot, lower body, and rim, solid panels and neck, and intersecting ladder-form bars flowing across the shoulder. A beautiful example replete with intricate embellishments and a graceful form! Size: 5.25" W x 6.1" H (13.3 cm x 15.5 cm).
Published in: J. Schulman, B.V. "Archaeology…" Amsterdam, 1981, no. 221.
For a stylistically-similar example, please see The Metropolitan Museum of Art, accession number 74.51.761: https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/240348
Another stylistically-similar example of a larger form hammered for $10,000 at Christie's, New York "Antiquities" auction (sale 14355, April 25, 2017, lot 241): https://www.christies.com/lotfinder/ancient-art-antiquities/a-mycenaean-painted-pottery-piriform-jar-circa-6067610-details.aspx?from=searchresults&intObjectID=6067610&sid=ba502c69-2bbd-4fb2-8afb-a8c533e9d740
Provenance: private Alabama, USA collection; ex-Roy Green collection; ex-Royal-Athena Gallery, New York, USA; ex-Sotheby's, London auction (August 12, 1980, lot 206); ex-private Dr. Appelboom collection, The Netherlands, acquired in 1970
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Original lid missing. Repair to small area of rim, with resurfacing and overpainting along break lines. Minor abrasions and nicks to rim, handles, body, and foot, with small areas of touch-up paint to two areas of rim, and heavy encrustations mostly inside vessel. Nice earthen deposits and great traces of original pigment throughout.