Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History



  • Footed Bowl, Predynastic Period, probably late Naqada I–early Naqada II, ca. 3750–3550 b.c.
    Egyptian
    Ceramic; H. 3 7/8 in. (9.8 cm), Diam. 6 in. (15.3 cm)
    Rogers Fund, 1910 (10.176.113)
    In the Predynastic Period, Egyptian potters created a wide variety of ceramic vessels. One of the most unusual—and favorite—objects in the Metropolitan Museum's collection is a red polished ware bowl with supports shaped like human feet. This simple, round bowl, tipped slightly forward as if to offer its contents, has two such feet solidly attached to its underside. Made from Nile clay, the bowl has a smoothed, slipped, and polished surface, giving it a light sheen. Although the human feet that support this bowl add a touch of drollness to the vessel's appearance, the feet were not created solely as an element of humor. This ceramic form should most likely be read as the three-dimensional hieroglyph for the word w'b, meaning pure or clean. The bowl tips forward so that purified water could be spilled out onto the ground, and because excavated footed bowls are from cemeteries, the offering of clear water was a libation for the dead.
    This work of art also appears on Connections: Clay

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  • Footed Bowl, Predynastic Period, probably late Naqada I–early Naqada II, ca. 3750–3550 B.C.
    Egyptian
    Ceramic; H. 3 7/8 in. (9.8 cm), Diam. 6 in. (15.3 cm)
    Rogers Fund, 1910 (10.176.113)

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