KTH2804 (Dressel 24 Amphora with dipinto, 8 holes, and intentionally removed base) [permalink] [next] [show more links]
In or from KTH Container
Logical part of
Threpsiades Inventoried Objects
Typological identification
Dressel 24 Amphora
Conservation in 1976(?) left traces of acrylic resin adhesive for joining sherds.
Conservation in 2019/2020 (Argiro Tsigri, Isthmia Museum). 24 sherds refit using Acryloid B-72 and gauze stabilizing strips inside; two joining sherds do not connect to main group.
Wide, tapering neck; flaring rim. Rounded body with widest point below midpoint; carination as body turns to shoulder. Two vertical loop handles, oval in section, attach to neck above mid-point and to shoulder above carination. Red dipinto in two lines on neck to upper body: ΠΑ | ­­ΚΒ ϹΝ (letter height of alpha is 7 cm). The lower part of the vessel has been intentionally removed. This is indicated by the lower edge of the two joining sherds that do not join to the main group. The lower edge of these is straight and the sherds can be set to stand flatly on it. This lower edge is flaked on the interior to create a break that is very distinct from the post-depositional breaks. This is aspect of the vessel is one firm indication that it was repurposed after its original use as a transport vessel. There are also 9 extant perforations that are another indication of the nature of the reuse and suggest that the modifications facilitated the circulation of air or the movement of liquid, with the former somewhat more plausible. Eight of these perforations are clearly ancient, the other is ambiguous as to when it was made. The perforations can be divided into three categories that take account of placement and size. The largest hole (.039m maximum diameter) is on the neck opposite the ΠΑ inscription, it is somewhat oval though its original edges are not all extant as the upper part is missing and what remains may be chipped. There is a perforation (.021cm maximum diameter) almost directly below the perforation on the neck and just above the carination of the shoulder. This is also oval, though with irregular edges; the long axis is horizontal. Another perforation of approximately the same size is nearly directly opposite and below the carination. This one is distinctly elongated with a horizontal orientation (.021 length, .013 height). Allowing for a certain imprecision in the placement of these perforations, it is reasonable to think of these two as a pair. Also directly below the dipinto is a well-formed much smaller (.004m) round perforation. At a very slightly lower level, though still above the widest point of the body, two likewise well formed, roughly circular, small (.006m diameter) perforations are partially extant; these two are in sherds attached to the main group of joining sherds. At approximately the same level as these holes and roughly inline with the perforation in the neck, is a vertically-oriented gap (.019 height) that may be partly ancient in that it preserves the clean curve of a .006m diameter perforation, though it may be, at least in part, a modern pick mark. Overall this gap can be distinguished from the others by having a wide chip around its outer edge and even more extensive chipping around the inner edge. The unattached group of two joining sherds preserves two perforations that are similar in size and formation to these lower ones in main group. One (.007m) is below the widest point, though well above (.104m) the cut lower edge of the transformed vessel; its circumference is completely preserved, though the break passes through it. The other is closer to that edge, .064m above it; 3/4 of its circumference is preserved and at .009m it is the largest of the small, well-formed holes. As a general comment, these small perforations have relatively sharp edges on the exterior and wide chipping on the interior. This suggests that pressure was applied from the outside in order to form, as one would expect. The purpose of the perforations in combination with the removal of the base (which we assume to be roughly contemporaneous) is uncertain, though they are certainly extensive enough to have transformed this vessel into a specialized element of an intentional activity. Storage of a product that need aeration is an option, or perhaps the piece was used as a pen for small animals. Because the bottom was removed, it may have provided ventilation or access to a chamber. It is possible that liquid passed through it, though that seems less likely than other options. These exceedingly preliminary suggestions do not preclude the recognition of additional possibilities.
Fabric, firing, and surface description
Slightly granular fabric fired variably to reddish brown, frequent tiny golden micaceous bits (many visible on surfaces), occasional small rounded lime chunks and other smaller light bits, occasional medium dark stones, some other smaller to tiny varied bits. Exterior surface has thin wash, pale (near 10YR 8/3, “very pale brown”); interior plain.
Preservation comment
21 sherds preserve entire neck, stubs of handles at neck and lower part of one on shoulder, much of body down to belly and past widest point, the lower part and base has been intentionally removed as indicated by the smaller group of two joining sherds. The rim is entirely missing. Of these sherds 19 definitely join as single main group, two joining sherds were not attached to the main group in conservation thought there is clear overlap so that there position can be determined and that is reflected in the profile drawing. Slight, extensive abrasion and sparse, slight pitting and chipping; worn breaks; specks of encrustation. There are 8 perforations, 7 of which are certainly ancient.
Body diameter
Neck diameter
Neck diameter
Preserved height
Wall thickness
Ceramic (Material)
Fabric Munsell reading
5YR 6/6
Suggested citation
“KTH2804 (Dressel 24 Amphora with dipinto, 8 holes, and intentionally removed base).” In Kenchreai Archaeological Archive, edited by J.L. Rife and S. Heath. The American Excavations at Kenchreai, 2013-2022. <http://kenchreai.org/kth/kth2804>