**Originally Listed At $300**
Ancient Egypt, Middle Kingdom, ca. 2050 to 1800 BCE. One of the classic forms of antiquity, a rounded vessel with a tapered body that ends in a small, disc foot, and that once likely had a more pronounced mouth and a stopper/lid. It is carved from alabaster that is not quite opaque. Hold this example to the light, and you can see the bands of darker color within the stone. A central hole has been drilled into it. This type of vessel was used to hold cosmetics; the Egyptians are famous for the cosmetics worn by both men and women, like black kohl painted around the eyes. Size: 1.95" W x 1.2" H (5 cm x 3 cm)
Alabaster, which is a form of gypsum or calcite, was quarried along the length of the Nile, from Giza to just south of Luxor, and the Egyptians made its carved forms famous throughout the ancient world. A thousand years later, the Greeks made vessels like this out of pottery and painted them white in imitation of the beautiful stone. On this example, as you examine the interior, you can see the grooves left behind from drilling it into its current form.
Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection
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