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Greek and Etruscan Pottery

black, decoration, pieces, red and white

GREEK AND ETRUSCAN POTTERY. Dr. Schliemann, in his noted excavations at Hissarlik (ancient Troy), brought forth in the lowest (oldest) stratum crude black, handmade, sunbaked pottery. It is supposed to be about 3,000 years old. The stratification next above this held polished black earthenware with crude raised and incised decoration filled in with white. Some pieces were turned on the wheel; some vessels have crude human and animal forms. In the Cyclades (at Thera) well-executed pottery has been found; some turned on the wheel and baked in furnaces, with decoration in white, red or black These date from 2500 to 1600 s.c. The decorative motifs, quite naturalistic and well-drawn, are seaweed, cuttlefish, nautilus and other marine subjects. Other quite recent discoveries on the islands of Rhodes, Crete, Cyprus, in Attica, Bceotia, etc., give us some knowledge of the products from about 2000 to 1500 a.c. Crete evidently was the centre of this remarkable Bronze Age culture (termed Mycenean Period).

Minoan Period.— Called also Cretan Period. Excavations made under the ruins of the palace of Knossos (ancient capital of Crete) brought forth unglazed, handsome pottery with primitive ornament (scratched lines, punctuations, etc) filled in with chalk and line decoration in colors. These are said to date earlier than 2000 tic Later ware found has light colored ornament (whorls, angles, etc.) on a ground of black varnish, also black painting on bare red clay ground. These pieces show fine technique; some are as thin as the finest blown glassware. They consist of bowls, wine-pots, amphora, tableware on *high Rims are some times waved. Decoration is in red, yellow.

orange and white, on brown or greyish-black body. The latest pieces appear to date about 1600 B.0 The most remarkable of these ware pieces are the funnel-formed, footless vases; they have decoration of conventional and natural flowers, rosettes, birds, fishes, shellfish, etc., in bright colors on lustrous black ground —an effective contrast. Colors run to yellow ochre, brick-red, purple-red, milky-white, while the body is buff color. Most pieces are turned on the wheel. This ware is termed Kaman's, because first found in a grotto at Kamares The above wares belonged to what has been classified as the Prehistoric Period.

Corinthian Style.— The earliest of this archaic Greek pottery shows Egyptian tendency in decoration, later followed by figures of animals or the Sphinx taken from the older Oriental period. Then followed single mytho logical figures with name inscriptions, later came hunting scenes, dancing groups of nude males and females (former often Satyrs), a youth riding or walking alongside a horse, etc. While the main composition of the figures is painted in black varnish on the red clay body. sometimes white and purple details (dress, features, etc.) appear, also incised lines indicate muscles, etc. White pigment on the red ground is used for the nude parts of women, for horses, dogs, etc. These pieces are said to date from 650 to 550 a.c. Their popularity soon died out with the competi.ion of the artists of Athens.