This is a beautiful and well preserved vessel from ancient Cyprus with an exceptionally good provenance. It is a hemispherical, deep bowl with a bipartite handle, a so-called milk bowl, white slip II ware. The bowl is decorated with dotted and linear patterns with a matt, dark brown varnish, against a cream coloured background, similarly but less elaborate with lines on the handle. Two old inventory numbers (2523 and 1085) were written on the inside with ink.
A close parallel, also for the decoration, can be found in the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna (inventory number V1080) and in the Musée Royal de Mariemont (inventory number LS 1903). See also British Museum London (inventory numbers C220; C222; C223; C224; C225; C228; C234; C236; C237); Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery (inventory number 1982A801).
Desmond Morris, The Art of Ancient Cyprus (Oxford, 1985), p. 31 and pl 31a
A. S. Murray - A. H. Smith - H. B. Walters, Excavations in Cyprus (London, 1900), p. 35-36, fig. 63-64; p. 40, fig. 68; p. 47, fig. 72
L. Crewe – H. Catling – T. Kiely (eds.), Enkomi, 2009 (U. 243; 22.13; 45.18; 66.107-108; 69.32; 88.24+28)
Paul Åström, The Swedish Cyprus Expedition vol. IV, part IC: The Late Cypriot Bronze Age. Architecture and Pottery (Lund, 1972)
Friede Vandenabeele a.o., Chypre, 8000 ans de civilisations entre trois continents (Mariemont, 1982), p. 27, nr. 33.
Late Bronze Age, circa 1450-1250 B.C.
Length 22.3 cm maximum; height 9.5 cm; diameter of the bowl opening 16.3 cm on average.
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1896. Subsequently Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University, 1968 (no. 3129).
Intact; some wear and miniscule rim chips as visible on the photographs; stable hairline crack at one of the attachments of the handle; the tip of the handle gives the impression to be broken on one of the photograph but I think the shape was intented this way; on the inside a small area with the remains of an adhesive used for a label (only visible when the bowl is inspected in ultraviolet light, not under normal conditions).