Small Cypriot Clay Bottle from the Desmond Morris Collection


A small bottle made of polished, darkened clay. The vessel consists of a round base, tall neck, and two holes pierced at the rim for a suspension cord or stopper-attachment of sorts. It is finely decorated with an incised geometric pattern, accentuated by white pigmentation. The vessel is decorated with vertical bands of diamonds, placed one on top of the other, alternating with a horizontal band of a multilinear, chequered pattern. In this instance, the horizontal lines visible at the base of the neck act as lower borders to the tiered neck-diamonds. The body is decorated with four large, closed-border diamonds and thick, horizontal bands. These bands are broken into segments, as opposed to running continuously around the vessel.

Date: 1900 - 1600 BC
Provenance: Ex Desmond Morris Collection.
Condition: Extremely fine condition; some signs of ageing on the surface; minor chips to the rim; vessel has been professionally repaired to the base and underside of the body.


SKU: PM-53 Category:

The patterning on this bottle displays the specific attribute of a known maker, referred to as the ‘Tiered Diamond Artist’. This artist has a distinctive calligraphic style, characterised by heavily and boldly incised lines.

This impressive item comes from the private collection of Desmond Morris, the author of one of the most comprehensive studies on Cypriot art. In addition, he was an accomplished zoologist, ethologist, surrealist painter, and a popular author in human socio-biology.

Weight 287.9 g
Dimensions L 16.5 cm



Time Period

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