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Ceramics and Sherds Kimberley Connors

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1 Ceramics and Sherds Kimberley Connors


3 Archaeology Material Culture Data Recording Field Methodology Chemical analysis Specialization Experimental

4 Artifacts – Ceramic Pottery Clay deposits 10,000 years ago Artifact Most frequently found Skeumorph – mimics original material Different vessels for different purposes Firing: baking pottery in a kiln Kiln: oven where pottery is baked at very high temps

5 Ceramics at work


7 Shapes & Whole Vessels Pithoi Amphora Amphoriskos Krater Jugs Juglets Lamps Etc.

8 Amphora The amphora was a two-handled vase used for storage and transport. Krater The word krater means "mixing-bowl," and the vase was used for mixing wine with water. Kylix This drinking-cup is sometimes called the "symposium-vase," since it appears often in vase-representations of symposia Kantharos This type of drinking-cup is often seen held by Dionysus in representations on vases. Pithoi Large Storage vessel



11 What were these pots used for?

12 Sherds Sherds vs. Shards Diagnostics: sherds used for analysis Typologies: How was it made and what was it used for? (Shapes Decorations Fabric) Chronology: When was it made? Petrography: Where was it made?

13 Ceramics Only the diagnostics pieces are keep First washed and left to dry. Keep in separate bags corresponding to a specific square and locus on a site Separate wares: fine ware vs. course ware Typed as to piece: rim, base, collar, etc. Reconstruct the diagnostics pieces.

14 Diagnostics Handles Rims Collars Bases Body Potter’s marks Uruk Period


16 Sherd Count Handles Rims Collars Bases Body



19 Ceramics: The technical term for true pottery 10k years old. Pottery as pots Pottery: Mixture of clay, water and a temper Skeuomorph: A thing that mimics another in clay Sherds Broken pottery pieces Reconstruct Technological and compositional studies Functional analyses Classifications or Typologies Intuitive: one person, one site or collection - morphological Type-variety: the diagnostics (fabric, decoration, or surface) in a certain area –Quantitative : patterned correlations of dimensional measurements max diam., total height,, etc, see Cesnola web site Physical properties Levigated (inclusions), Petrographic slides hardness, texture, fabric, luster, porosity, carrying capacity, Treatment, decoration and surface Surface, finish or decoration – burnished, incised, combed, color

20 We have 16 in our 8th grade and 13 in our > 7th grade. The 7th grade studies: pre history, the Mesopotamians, Egyptians, Harappans, Phoenicians, two ancient Chinese cultures, Hebrews, Olmecs, Maya, and Aztecs. They should be into Mesopotamia by the time you see them. 8th graders study by heart, but I can tell you they study: the Greeks, Islamic culture. Basically, I take the students from pre-history up to the Greeks (I often start Greece) and the 8th grade teachers take the students from the Greeks to the Renaissance.





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