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Finds from the Hake-Kitchener excavations:
object descriptions


Proto White Painted/ early Bichrome (Cat. H.1–H.7)

Along with some of the Bucchero/Black Slip described below, the earliest ceramic material from Hake’s collections consists of numerous examples of Proto White Painted (PWP) and early Bichrome (BiCh) wares dating to the later 11th and earlier 10th centuries BC. These pottery types originated during the 11th century BC as the older White Painted Wheelmade III wares of the LC IIC–IIIA period were transformed by a combination of local economic and cultural initiatives with influences from Aegean and Near Eastern sources.[4]

Although generally regarded as the ancestor of the White Painted (WP) tradition which dominated the ceramic assemblages of the Iron Age down to Hellenistic times, PWP is strongly represented in burial assemblages and may have originated as a specific funerary ware.[5]  The earliest tombs in the Kaloriziki cemetery discussed in the section on History, culture and burial customs contain many examples of PWP and early BiCh. The rarity of contemporary settlement deposits makes it difficult however to determine the exact relationship of grave ceramics with the types used by the living on a daily basis in their settlements and sanctuaries.

Typical PWP/early BiCh shapes represented in the Hake assemblage include large storage jars (amphoras), the basket-shaped bowl (kalathos), the biconical juglet, and the animal-shaped flask (askos).[6]  Some are LC IIIB types (e.g. H.4) but most date to the second half of the 11th century (CG IA period) in line with the likely date of the earliest use of the Kourion cemeteries. Several shapes typical of the PWP/early BiCh repertoire, such as stirrup jars and bottles, are not found in the British Museum corpus. This probably reflects Hake’s selection processes, and the subsequent dispersal of his material around the United Kingdom and Ireland, rather than their absence from the tombs excavated in 1882. Some of the items in the corpus are transitional PWP to WP, and belong to the late CG IA or CG IB period.[7]

White Painted/Bichrome (Cat. H.8–H.49)

White Painted proper appears within CG IA alongside PWP and early Bichrome. The pottery manifests continuity from the existing ceramic tradition, but with a developing repertoire of new shapes, fabrics, and decorative motifs.[8]  The Hake corpus is particularly well provided with large storage amphorae for wine or oil, numerous serving jugs, and variety of cup shapes. Large quantities of these vases were placed in tombs of this period, perhaps intended as symbolic or actual feasting and drinking sets (Cat. H.9–H.33).

White Painted wares in particular proved of great importance in establishing a relatively precise chronology of the period through an elaborate system of classification developed by the Swedish Cyprus Expedition mentioned above.[9]  Based on the existence of what he believed were fairly homogeneous ceramic types which developed in a fairly uniform manner over time, Gjerstad divided the period between around 1050 BC and the beginning of Hellenistic times into seven chronological groups (numbered I to VII, representing Cypro-Geometric I down to Cypro-Classical II). The precise date of an archaeological assemblage such as a burial group or settlement context was determined by the percentage of these types among the ceramic finds. The development of WP wares mirrors broader developments in Cypriot material culture, the changing shapes and designs reflecting the different regions and cultures with which the island came into contact during the Iron Age.  

Bichrome wares (Cat. H.43–H.49) developed on similar lines in connection with White Pained, with many common shapes and decorative motifs found in both types.  Examples of Bich are less common in the Hake corpus, but typical shapes include small juglets and flasks for perfumes and unguents (H.43–44). The single example of a vase from the ‘Palm Leaf’ workshop, dating to the Cypro-Archaic period, was probably made by a potter in Salamis.[10]

Bucchero and Black Slip (Cat. H.50–H.59)

A number of objects from the Hake-Kitchener excavations represent types which appear already during the final phase of the Late Cypriot period (LCIII) but which were also made or used down into the Cypro-Geometric I period or later. These include the chlorite model of a bathtub with incised decoration (see below, Cat. H. 132) and a two-handled cup with crudely incised fluted decoration in a fabric similar to Handmade Bucchero ware (Cat. H. 50). These may have been found in a cemetery of the Late Bronze Age, such as Episkopi-Bamboula, but the fact that the remainder of Hake’s material is no earlier than the 11th century BC suggests that these items were found in one or more Iron Age burials, probably in the Kaloriziki-Mersinoudhia area. The Bucchero cup can perhaps be included among a larger group of polished and fluted or incised vessels in coarse fabrics occurring in the cemetery at Kaloriziki transitional Late Bronze Age to Iron Age period.[11]

Another early Iron Age fabric type with its origins in the LC III period, but which develops over the 11th and 10th centuries BC, is Wheelmade Bucchero ware and the related Wheelmade Black Slip. The distinctive horned handles of the amphora (e.g. Cat. H. 378) derive from LBA examples, while the grooved or fluted decoration found on the Bucchero/Black Slip jugs also have parallels in the earlier period (e.g. Cat. H.52–H.53). The kantharos or drinking cup is similar in shape to those found in other fabrics (WP and Plain White), a similarity underlined by the almost total loss of its slip (Cat. H.57).

More unusual is the flask with multiple string-holes (Cat. H. 58) that has no obvious parallel. By contrast, the small globular-biconical flask Cat. 59) is typical of Group V shapes dating to the Cypro-Archaic period. 

Plain White and Coarse wares (Cat. H. 60–H.75)

A single example of Coarse Wheelmade ware dating to the Cypro-Geometric period (Cat. no. 60) is paralleled in a number of Daniel’s tombs at Kaloriziki and is also common in the cemetery of Palaepaphos-Skales.[12]Many of the same shapes found in WP, BiCh and Bucchero/BS also appear in Plain White wares, which are also widely represented in the Hake corpus. These include unslipped versions of Bucchero/ Black Slip which are indistinguishable from slipped or black-fired examples.[13]  The ubiquitous ovoid or globular medium size jugs (H. 67–H.71) mirror the development of other wares through the CG and CA periods. They are typical items of table ware, accompanied by vessels such as the hydria (large water jug) (H. 74). Several preserved examples are of unusual shapes or fabrics whose exact classification remains unclear.

Phoenician imports (Cat. nos H.76–H.77)

A rare imported Phoenician ‘pilgrim flask’ dating to the Cypro-Geometric period provides important evidence for commercial connections with the Levantine world. The coarse clay and poorly executed decoration distinguishes the vessel from similarly-shaped shapes made in WP and BiCh fabrics. Examples from the Kourion area occur in the cemetery of Kaloriziki but also in tombs found in the village of Episkopi.[14]

Red Slip ware (Cat. nos H. 78–H.82)

Another typical fineware of the Cypro-Geometric and Cypro-Archaic periods is Red Slip, characterised by fairly thin walled vessels with angular or metallic shapes covered with a fairly thick lustrous slip.[15]  The wares, which may have been influenced by Phoenician imports of pottery and metal goods, first appeared in the CG II–III period and developed over the course of CA.[16]  The examples represented here belong chiefly to the CA period, consisting of several bowls with carinated profile as well as a hemispherical body.  

Black-on-Red wares (Cat nos H. 83–H.100)

Numerous examples of this distinctive thin-walled vessel in a variety of shapes, often showing great ingenuity and technical accomplishment on the part of the potter, were found by Hake. The main shapes include small vessels in very thin, delicate fabrics such as juglets and flasks for perfumes and unguents as well as more robust plates/platters, bowls and jugs used as fine table ware. The latter types also share various features with to Bichrome wares.  

Bichrome Red/Polychrome (Cat nos 101–103)

This is a variant of Bichrome ware which appears during the Cypro-Archaic I period and distinguished by the addition of white painted details, though many of the shapes are similar (kraters, jugs, small flasks, jars and and vases with plastic decoration). By the later part of the WP/BiCh sequence, Cypriot potters began to experiment under the influenced of imported wares, including vases from the Greek works The so-called Pseudo-Attic Style). Some of the more elaborately decorated White Painted vessels in Gjerstad’s Group VII (and early Hellenistic times) fall into this category.[17]

Vases with attached human or animal figures or parts (Cat. H. 104–H.105)

 The Hake material includes several examples of the distinctive Cypriot jugs with spouts in the form of animal heads or vessels or else with an attached female figurine holding a jug (which sometimes also acted as a spout). These can occur in a variety of fabrics (WP/BiCh/BoR/BiChRed/Polychrome and Plain White).[18]

Transport amphorae (Cat. H.106–H.107)

Hake kept a handle of a transport amphora of Rhodian origin (3rd or 2nd century BC) stamped with the name of the maker or trader, though this is now illegible (H.106).

The large storage vessel was imported from the island of Rhodes in the later 3rd or earlier 2nd century BC, one of many which came to Cyprus from this area in the Hellenistic period. Many other examples have previously been identified around Kourion area and throughout the island where they usually constitute the largest percentage of imported transport vessels in any representative assemblage.[19]  The base of another transport vessel was retained, a rare import from the North Aegean/Black Sea region dating to the 4th century BC (H.107).  

Black gloss and slip wares (Cat. 108–H.110)

Related to older Black Slip wares but nonetheless marking an innovation within the locally-made repertoire are vases in a variety of shapes with such as the mastos (breast-shaped) cup (H.108). This shape, also found in Stroke Polished fabrics (see SCE IV/2, fig. LXVII), is directly paralleled by several silver cups from Tomb 83 of the BM excavations at Kourion (GR 1896,2-1.336; another example not preserved). This dates to the CA II or CC period.

Rather closer to the imported gloss or slipped wares is a cup with similar angular metallic features, related to late Classical or early Hellenistic wash wares and probably to be dated accordingly. Exact parallels are not known to the author (H.109).  

No imported Greek pottery was collected by Hake, either figured vessels or undecorated black gloss wares, with the exception of a small pyxis, a cosmetics box of early Hellenistic date probably made in the Aegean (H.110).[20]

Hellenistic pottery (Cat. H.111–H.121)

The beginning of the Hellenistic period on Cyprus witnessed many changes in the ceramic record, as the island became integrated into the much larger regional economy of the Ptolemaic world and its neighbours throughout the Eastern Mediterranean. One very distinctive vessel type which becomes common during the third century is the unguentarium a bottle for precious oils or lotions with a pronounced bulge in the centre of a tubular body (a shape known as fusiform). Related to these, but generally larger, are vessels with sloping shoulders on a narrow base (so-called piriform types). Both types are commonly found in tombs, where they may have been used to prepare the body for burial or simply to reflect the wealth of the deceased. Examples in the Hake collection are paralleled in the tombs of this period excavated by McFadden at Ayios Ermoyenis (H.111H.116).

Plain wares from this period also occur such as a lagynos (jug) with a bulging neck (H.117), as well as coarser vessels which served as cooking pots (H.118119). Some rare items in the Hake collection appear to belong in this period, such as the spouted jug covered with what appears to be a white slip (H.120).    

Late Hellenistic and Roman pottery (Cat. H.121–H.130)

The mid to late Hellenistic period witnessed changes in the pattern of production and consumption of fine pottery throughout the Eastern Mediterranean world with the emergence of local production centres of various slipped or colour coated wares known collectively as sigillata (formerly called ‘Pergamene’ or other geographically-derived terms, including Arretine for examples made in Italy).[21]  This gradually displaced both the late black gloss (‘glaze’) tradition represented by Attic and other Aegean imports (and local imitations) as well as the various black slip wares which had previously been very popular on the island.

On Cyprus, the fineware tradition was dominated by so-called Eastern Sigillata A ware which probably originated in the area of Pergamon in western Turkey in the middle of the 2nd century BC (H.122–H.125). By the beginning of the modern era, this ware shows influence from similar products made in Italy, such as the jug with rouletted decoration on the body (Cat. 122; also H.123 and H.124). A single example of an open shape is represented in the collection by a small dish to plate of Eastern Sigillata A or perhaps Italian Sigillata (Cat. H.125). 

The date and context of unprovenanced examples such as those in the Hake collection can be refined with reference to finds from modern excavations in the cemeteries of Kourion[22]  and nearby Amathus,[23]as well as Paphos[24] and sites outside of the island brought together in Hayes’ fundamental study of Roman finewares on Cyprus.[25]  A rare shape in this fabric is a small box in the form of a miniature clibanum or cooking pot (Cat. H.126).

In contrast to the fine wares, also found are vessels such as lentoid bottles made of coarse red-orange clay known as pilgrim flaks decorated with crudely incised spirals on the bodies (Cat. H.127H.129). Excavated examples from Salamis have been found in contexts dating from the 1st to the 3rd centuries AD, but they probably have a wider range as the basic shape remains in use down into the Late Roman and early Byzantine periods.[26]Another course ware shape is the Late Roman jug with ridged body which dates to the 6th or even 7th century AD.[27]  This is the latest object in the Hake collection, representing the final phase of the town before its abandonment (H.130).

Miscellaneous small objects in stone, clay and glass (Cat. nos 131–H.163)

In addition to the pottery items summarised above, George Hake also preserved numerous small objects in a variety of materials. Most are fairly unexceptional in themselves and unimportant in the absence of a firm archaeological context. By far the most important item, but also the oldest, is the chloritite model of a ‘bath tub’ or ‘coffin’ dating to the very end of the Late Bronze Age. This was almost certainly found in a burial in the Kaloriziki-Mersinoudhia area. Large tub-like containers made of clay, sometimes with incurving sides, have been found in a number of archaeological sites on Cyprus from the later phases of the Late Bronze Age (LC IIC and III), in funerary, settlement and industrial contexts. The shape resembles a bathtub, but also certain types of coffin (known as a larnax), found in the Aegean and the Levant.[28]Smaller items include: a small bronze domical weight (the only metal item in the Hake collection) (Cat. no. H. 131); numerous stone beads and spindle whorls of indeterminate Iron Age date, together with the fragment of a whetstone (Cat. nos H.133–H.148); several terracotta beads and miscellaneous items (Cat. nos. H. 149–52); glass beads of Hellenistic or Roman date (Cat. nos H. 159–H.163); bone discs which may have served as gaming counters or fragments, in addition to a number of rings made from longitudinally-cut bones of uncertain function (Cat. nos H.153–H.158). The exact date of the more common types is sometimes difficult to establish as the simpler forms were made and used over long periods of time. Many can be paralleled in scientifically-excavated assemblages on Cyprus such as those from Salamis and Amathus, as well as other sites within the broader Eastern Mediterranean world such as Corinth and Olynthos.[29]

Lamps (Cat. nos H.164–H.355)

The lamps excavated by Hake range in date from around the 5th century BC down to the late Roman period. Most were made on Cyprus, though they often copy prototypes developed in the major lamp-production centres of the eastern Mediterranean, especially Roman examples. The earliest lamps are simple wheel-made plates or bowls whose edge has been pinched to make a wick-rest. This is a type which originates in the LBA, where it is sometimes found in metal as well as clay, and which continues in use down to Hellenistic times. A more developed type is represented by the closed lamp, imported to Cyprus from the Greek world from the 5th and 4th centuries BC and later manufactured on the island. These are often covered with the distinctive black or red glaze also found on pottery of this date. Some of the later examples from the Hellenistic period have figural decoration on the discus or handle.

The majority of the lamps, however, are Roman in date and represent a development of the closed forms in use during the preceding centuries, with moulds replacing the wheel as the chief means of manufacture. Many are decorated with scenes on the discus – or upper surface – of the lamp around the hole used to fill the body with oil. Some bear the names of the lamp-maker, usually in Greek letters as the majority originated in the lamp-production centres of the Greek-speaking eastern Mediterranean. The latest examples date from the 4th or 5th centuries AD.

As Donald Bailey and others have noted, lamps were used in a wide range of contexts to provide lighting for homes, workshops, sanctuaries and, in the context of the present examples, tombs.[30]  Lamps were commonly placed in tombs, sometimes in fairly large numbers, either to facilitate the burial of the deceased or subsequent ceremonies in honour of the dead, or for use in the afterlife. A number of the tombs excavated by the Turner Bequest expedition contained lamps, especially of the Roman period, such as Tombs 110, 113, 114 and 118. Many lamps found in tombs show no sign of burning and may never have been used before their deposition in the tomb. The lamps may also have had some ritual significance, especially during the later Roman period when the spread of Christianity encouraged much stronger beliefs in the afterlife, in which light played an important symbolic role. Parks has suggested that this symbolism may have existed already in the Hellenistic period and was certainly widespread in Roman times, regardless of the specific religious beliefs of the individuals concerned.[31] 

  • ^ [4] - Iacovou 1994 (with references).
  • ^ [5] - Steel 1993.
  • ^ [6] - The classic study of Pieridou 1973.
  • ^ [7] - I am very grateful to Anna Georghiadou of the University of Cyprus for her help in classifying this material.
  • ^ [8] - Karageorghis 1983, 350–68
  • ^ [9] - SCE IV/2 passim; Gjerstad 1960
  • ^ [10] - Reyes 1994, 109.
  • ^ [11] - Benson 1973, pl. 39, Ware VII.
  • ^ [12] - Benson 1973, pl. 39; Karageorghis 1983 passim
  • ^ [13] - Benson 1973, pls 38–39.
  • ^ [14] - Bikai 1983.
  • ^ [15] - SCE IV/2, figs XXVII; XLIII.
  • ^ [16] - Karageorghis 1983, 367.
  • ^ [17] - SCE IV/2, figs LXIV–VI; Vandenabeele 1998, 43–6.
  • ^ [18] - Vandenabeele 1998; Hermary 1997.
  • ^ [19] - Grace 1980.
  • ^ [20] - Salles 1983, p. 30, no. 17 and fig. 9
  • ^ [21] - Hayes 1972, chapter 1; 1985; Hayes 1997, 37–59 ; Lund 2006.
  • ^ [22] - McFadden 1946.
  • ^ [23] - Abadie-Reynal 1987.
  • ^ [24] - Hayes 1991.
  • ^ [25] - Hayes 1985.
  • ^ [26] - Diederichs 1980, 39–40 nos 130–3;
  • ^ [27] - I am grateful to Dr Paul Roberts for this information. For parallels, see Diederichs 1980, 54 no. 201 and pls 18–19 (7th century AD).
  • ^ [28] - Collard 2008.
  • ^ [29] - SCE IV/2; Chavanne 1975 (Salamis); Chavanne 1990 (Amathus); Davison 1952 (Corinth); Robinson 1941 (Olynthos).
  • ^ [30] - Bailey 1963, 11–12; 1975, 9–10; Lyon-Caen and Hoff 1986, 16; papers in Oziol and Rebuffat; cf. Robins 1970 [1939] for a historical survey of lamp usage.
  • ^ [31] - Parks 1999, 359.