Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Blue-painted Storage jar

New Kingdom, Amarna Period
Dynasty 18
reign of Akhenaten
ca. 1353–1336 B.C.
From Egypt
H. 69 cm (27 3/16 in); greatest diam. 45.6 cm (17 15/16 in)
Credit Line:
Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1955
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 121
The use of predominantly blue floral motifs in the decoration of terracotta vessels reached its peak during the reigns of Amenhotep III and Akhenaten.The principal component of the blue pigment that was applied to ceramic vessels before firing was cobalt. Numerous examples of ceramics decorated in this style were excavated by the Museum in the palace of Amenhotep III at Malkata, in Thebes (for example 11.215.460).

This jar, datable to the middle to late reign of Akhenaten, may have held wine or beer to be served at a banquet. An elaborate polychrome floral decoration was painted on the shoulder and neck. The zigzag line around the neck, derived from the hieroglyph for water, was added to underline the presence of a cool drink inside.
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