Predynastic, Naqada II Period
Not on view
This model boat displays a flattened hull, gently sloping sides, and is significantly wider in the middle than at its bow and stern, both of which have a similar size and shape. Each of these ends probably curled upwards, based on the style of early boats depicted in rock art, but they are now missing. Small pieces of clay were added just behind the bow and in front of the stern, which seem to suggest crossbars and may standing in for the thwarts known from actual boats. The shape of this boat, especially the flattened hull, suggests that the artisan was using a boat made from wood planks as his model rather than one of reeds.
The boat’s simple shape and lack of decoration make it more difficult to date precisely, but models like these largely come from the Predynastic Period (ca. 4500 to 3100 B.C.). The marl or "desert" clay used to construct this one, however, was a material that came into widespread use in the Naqada IIc-d2 Period, and is the reason for its current date.