Ancient Egypt, Pre-Dynastic Period, Gerzeran Period, ca. 3000 BCE. A smooth, flat, greenish-grey schist palette, in the form of a pheasant- or partridge-like bird. The shape of the palette is a rounded body with a small projecting foot and head. A hole is drilled through to form an eye; there is another hole drilled through the bird's upper body, perhaps used to hang this item on a wall for storage. Palettes like this one were used by the Egyptians to make cosmetics for eye paint and eye protection. They are often found in the form of stylized animals; more elaborate forms, some with relief carvings, were made for temple ceremonies where priests would apply makeup to images of deities. Size: 4" L x 2.4" W x .25" H (10.2 cm x 6.1 cm x 0.6 cm)
Provenance: private Illinois, USA collection; ex collection of Seward Kennedy, New York, USA; ex Ancient Resource Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
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