Large Chinese Neolithic Painted Pottery Jar (with woven impression)
This 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 quite "heavily-potted" with a well-rounded body, two sturdy loop handles and wide flared mouth. It is relatively highly-fired. The inside of the mouth and the upper body have been coated in a reddish-brown wash on top of which have been painted "hand" and geometric patterns in a darker fired-on mineral-based pigment. In places on the surface of the lower body are the marks left by ancient "calcified" growths, a result of its extremely long burial.
Interestingly, to the flat base are the distinct impressions of a woven mat, clearly what this jar stood on during its construction whilst the clay was still soft.
Height 28cm (11 inches), diameter 26 cm (10.25 inches). Of course some degree of restoration or repair must realistically be expected for such an ancient pottery object; there is some restoration to part of the neck and mouth, the edge of one handle has been chipped and there is a stabilised crack to one side of the body.
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