Period: Halaf

Date: ca. 5600–5000 B.C.

Geography: Syria, Tell Brak

Culture: Halaf

Medium: Ceramic, paint

Dimensions: 2.83 x 1.65 in. (7.19 x 4.19 cm)

Classification: Ceramics-Vessels

Credit Line: Purchase, Colt Archaeological Institute Inc. Gift, 1988

Accession Number: 1988.323.7


Halaf pottery was made by hand and decorated with very finely executed designs in one or two colors. The surface of the finest pottery was then highly burnished and a glossy effect was achieved by the use of fluxes, which serve to lower the melting point of the pigments, in some cases accidentally achieving true glazes. This fragment of a thin walled vessel has the exterior painted with light and dark brown decoration consisting of a stylized bird in profile with back arched, a long neck, and a large circular head. A vertical zigzag pattern on the left and a dark brown band partly frame the bird. The rim edge has a horizontal band with vertical stripes.