Cypriot animal headed black on red ware jug: (Cypro Archaic I) 750-600 BC

animal headed black on red ware jug

The spherical body with long neck is decorated with typical concentric circles plus a single motif of intersecting strokes. The long neck with a spout in the shape of a cow, sheep or camel head with open mouth as spout and nostrils pierced through. There is a filling hole at the back of the head, and a double strap handle joining the head body. There is a very similar jug in the Metropolitan museum New York except there the head has horns and is clearly a bull.

Black on red ware is typical of late Geometric and Archaic pottery in Cyprus, and also in Phoenicia.  The idea of the mouth of an animal functioning as a spout goes back to the Early Cypriot period, 1500 years earlier, though then the animal probably had cultic significance, with horned animals and, later, birds being almost exclusively depicted, especially in Ascoi.   By this period almost any animal might be depicted.

The neck and mouth repaired ears chipped, the body intact. 

Size: height 23.5cm

(Ex collection of Dr Josef Mayer-Riefenthaler, Austria; acquired in 1965/6 during his service with the UN forces in Cyprus)

(Aquired Charles Ede Ltd, 27th July 2016)