Amara West project blog


Investigating life in an Egyptian town

Amara West 2015: ceramics and an enigmatic beast

Anna Garnett, Assistant Project Curator, British Museum

Blue box inbox
One of our blue crates is put to use as an inbox for excavators to drop bags off after a day digging – I discuss with them the nature of the deposit, any finds that are associated with the ceramics, and how one particular context links with others in the same room. All of this information helps me to establish how the pottery was used by the ancient inhabitants of Amara West.

Sorting pottery
The pottery from each context undergoes an initial sift in order to separate rims, bases, handles, and particular fabrics such as sherds from handmade Nubian vessels. Siobhan Shinn has joined me this season to assist with the sorting of the pottery – here using a toothbrush to clean a potentially interesting sherd.

Ali Jellal
The diagnostic sherds – thousands of them over a season – are all washed and dried by Ali Jellal who has worked with us for several years.

An unusual potmark
The majority of the pottery corresponds directly with our established typology of Ramesside pottery from Amara West, though sometimes we get a surprise. When cleaning part of an amphora (storage vessel) from house D12.8, a pot mark emerged, made after the vessel was fired. After much discussion at the dig house, the depiction of a cow or a bull is the favourite, but we welcome any further suggestions!

Alongside regular updates on the blog, follow the season on Twitter: @NealSpencer_BM and #amarawest

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Filed under: Amara West 2015, pottery

2 Responses

  1. Looks like a wild boar to me.

  2. sherif says:

    Good luck

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