Egypt, late Pre-Dynastic, ca. 4000 to 3100 BCE. This is a percussion flaked knife made in the "classic" style with a long curved blade edge and a straight back edge. This knife has a handle and is made of a brown-grey flint. The handle may have at one time been covered with gilded material or something perishable -- for example, the Pitt Rivers Egyptian Chert knife has a decorated ivory handle, as does the "Gebel el-Arak" knife held by the Louvre. Blades of ceremonial knives like those examples and this one are uniformly made of this particular colored chert, which some researchers have interpreted to be an emulation of the color of metal. However, the handle on this piece -- and the fact that it is not completely polished on its surface -- suggests that it was made to be used for more than just ceremony, perhaps butchering or harvesting. Size: 6.375" W x 1.5" H (16.2 cm x 3.8 cm); 3" H (7.6 cm) on included custom stand.
Provenance: ex-private Los Angeles, California, USA collection
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