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Faience vessel in the form of Eros riding a duck


Height: 7.000 inches

GR 1875.11-10.2 (Vases K 1)

Room 22: Alexander the Great

    Faience vessel in the form of Eros riding a duck

    Probably made in Egypt, about 300-250 BC
    Said to be from Tanagra, Greece

    This jug is the finest faience vessel surviving from the Hellenistic world. It takes the form of Eros, the Greek god of love, clinging to the neck of a duck on whose back he is riding.

    The combination of traditional Egyptian techniques with a purely Greek theme is characteristic of the products of the faience industry at Alexandria. The court of the Ptolemies (the Hellenistic Greek rulers of Egypt) at Alexandria was a great artistic centre. It became the focus for cultural exchange between the Greek and Egyptian worlds and their distinctive artistic traditions.

    I. Freestone and D. Gaimster, Pottery in the making: world-1 (London, The British Museum Press, 1997)

    L. Burn, The British Museum book of G-1, revised edition (London, The British Museum Press, 1999)