Ancient Ninevite Incised Terracotta Tripod with Conical Stands


A well moulded, delicate terracotta Ninevite tripod, featuring a globular body supported on tripod-feet, composed of three short, conical stands. The vessel has a short neck, with sloping sides that further extend into a straightened opening with a slightly inverted rim. The upper part of the globular body is richly decorated with geometric designs, including horizontal rows of vertical incisions that alternate with bands of incised triangular shapes. Two horizontally placed lug handles, with perforation, protrude from the neck. The central perforations suggest that this terracotta tripod might have been hung with string.


Date: Circa 3100-2550 BC
Condition: Fine condition, with minor chips the rim, small chip and crack to the body.


SKU: HL-428 Category: Tags: ,

The Ninevite 5 culture of Upper Mesopotamia, flourished in the Northern Iraq and in the Khabur region of North-eastern Syria between the end of the Uruk and the late Early Dynastic period (circa. 3100/3000-2600/2550 BC). It was named after the fifth level of the archaeological stratification discovered in the Istar Temple area. Ninevite has become an important city of the Old Assyrian period. Before the political power of the Old Assyrian Empire reached the Upper Mesopotamia, Ninevite culture was mainly defined through its distinctive pottery production. Potteries of various shapes, with engraved and painted patterns, and small lugged handles, represent the most distinctive feature of the Ninevite culture of the final stage, circa. 2600 BC. Decorative bands of short, incised lines, herringbone and triangular or zig-zag patterns are features which characterise the potteries from the Ninevite 5 cultrual group. A number of potteries from Ninevite and Upper Mesopotamian cultures, with engraved geometric and zoomorphic patterns, were discovered in either religious temples or tombs, which suggests such type of potteries might have been either a dedicatory offering or a funerary object. The small size of this object, indicating it might have been executed for either purpose.



Weight 160.3 g
Dimensions W 8.3 x H 9.1 cm


Pottery and Porcelain

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