Large Chinese Neolithic Machang Phase Painted Pottery Jar (c. 2300 - 2000 BC)
This large pottery jar was made over 4,000 years ago during the Machang Phase (c. 2300 - 2000 BC) of the Majiayao culture, also known as the Gansu-Yangshao culture, from present day Gansu or Qinghai province. It is made from a pale yellowish-brown pottery. The elaborate painted geometric patterns covering the upper body and inner mouth are in purple and black mineral-based fired-on pigments.
It is of a most unusually large size for its shape; this form of Machang jar is usually seen in much smaller examples.
Height 21 cm (8.25 inches), diameter 23 cm (9 inches). One handle and an area of the rim has been restored, and there are two cracks to the mouth that have been stabilised, excusable in view of its great age !
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