Elamite Steatite Crescent Shape Vessel


An Ancient Elamite steatite vessel of short crescentic form, featuring a flat base and a thick rim, decorated with sinuo V-shaped motifs with scrolled bases. A horizontal line is displayed at the top and bottom framing the design. Evenly spaced incised vertical lines decorated the top of the flat rim. A circular perforation features through the base and on the reverse there is some residue from previous labels.


Date: 3rd millennium BC
Provenance: Sotheby's sale 12 December 1983, lot 37. Then Mayfair gallery pre-1999.
Condition: Fine condition. Some residue from previous labels, encrustation to the surface. Wear from over time.

In stock

Steatite vessels of the ‘Intercultural Style’, such as this fine example, are characterised by decorations on their entire surface with abstract patterns and vegetal and architectural motifs. The civilisation of Elam was one of the ancient culture within Mesopotamia and flourished between circa 2700 BC and 539 BC. Such vessel can be referred to the so-called Intercultural Style, an ensemble of carved vessels characterised by a distinctive low-relief decoration, depicting abstract and zoomorphic motifs. Vessels of this type have been recovered widely across all Near East regions dating from circa the 3rd millennium BC. This vessel could have been used for cosmetics: cosmetic products, such as eyeliner, were widely used in the Near East during ancient times. Various vessels were designed to facilitate skincare and the application of make-up, and this one could have been used to grind, mix, and apply ingredients for facial or body cosmetics.

Weight 99.7 g
Dimensions L 6.9 x W 3.5 cm



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