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Image of Attic Black-Gloss Lekythos (Oil Bottle)

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Attic Black-Gloss Lekythos (Oil Bottle)

ca. 520 BCE - 500 BCE

4 in. x 2 1/16 in. (diameter) (10.2 cm x 5.3 cm)

Bryn Mawr College
Accession Number: P.107
Geography: Europe, Greece
Classification: Containers and Vessels; Vessels; Lekythoi
Culture/Nationality: Attic

Keywords Click a term to view the records with the same keyword
This object has the following keywords:
  • Archaic - Refers to the pottery style found in Persia around 6000 BCE. The style is characterized by fine, plain buff pottery tempered with straw that is sometimes decorated with simple red or orange painted designs.
  • Attic - Style and culture of the region of Attica. For culture particular to the capital of Attica, Athens, use "Athenian."
  • black - UCL (Universal Color Language) standard color name identifying a range of blackish colors. More specifically, black is an achromatic color of maximum darkness, referring to objects having little or no hue owing to the absorption of almost all light in the visible spectrum. In the context of pigments, black is theoretically the mixture of all colors. In the context of colors of light, black is the absence of light.
  • Black-figure - Refers to a style of Greek vase painting that developed from the Geometric and Orientalizing styles. It appeared in Corinth around 720 BCE, flourished in Attica by 600 BCE, and was found in Sparta, eastern Greece, and elsewhere, until the Red-figure style gradually replaced it in the late sixth century BCE. The style is characterized by a particular technique, which is characterized by the use of a refined slip, a two-stage firing process, and sintering to create black figures in silhouette on a red ground. Details were incised into the black figures or applied in purple or white pigment.
  • ceramic glaze - Thin, opaque, vitreous coating that is applied to the surface of a ceramic body by painting, spraying, or dipping, in order to add color, texture, or water resistance to the object. The glaze is applied to the surface of a fired ceramic piece, and then the piece is refired at a temperature that vitrifies the glaze, but is lower than the original firing temperature. Ceramic glazes are usually mixtures of silicates, colorants, and flux.
  • engobe - Slip glaze applied over a clay body to provide a smooth surface for further glazing or decoration, usually by dipping or brushing; contains color oxides as well as clay, feldspar, and silica.
  • lekythoi - Ancient Greek one-handled, usually tall and slender narrow-necked vessels used for oil and unguents and as an offering for the dead. The form resembles the aryballos in that it has a narrow neck and a single handle, but the lekythos is generally a taller vessel with a small, deep mouth. The Greek word lekythos was undoubtedly used for the various forms called "lekythos" today, although it also appears that the term was used for oil vessels in general in Ancient times.
  • slip - Fine clay which, when mixed with water, results in a fluid with a creamlike consistency, used in casting, glazing, decorating, and repairing ceramic wares; in its natural state, it contains sufficient flux to be used for glazing and decorating without the need of additives. For ceramic glaze with a high content of slip, use "slip glaze."
  • vase paintings - Refers to two-dimensional decoration applied to pottery by using paint made of metallic oxides or other pigments held in suspension in slip or another medium. The term is particularly used to refer to Ancient Greek red- and black-figure works. See also "porcelain paintings (visual works)."

Additional Images Click an image to view a larger version
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Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:
  • Ancient Greek Vessels: Pattern and Image Trout Gallery, Dickinson College , May 22, 2015 – Sep 26, 2015

  • Owner Name: Clarissa Compton Dryden, Class of 1932, MA 1935
    Role: Donor
    Place: Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, USA
    Acquisition Method: Inheritance
    Disposal Method: Donation
    Ownership Start Date: 1925
    Ownership End Date: 1950's to 1980's
    Remarks: A relative of archaeologist, Charles Densmore Curtis (1875-1925), Dryden presented the Ella Riegel Museum with items she inherited from his collection of Greek, Roman, and Etruscan artifacts throughout the 1950s-1980s

  • Owner Name: Charles Densmore Curtis (1875-1925)
    Role: Collector
    Disposal Method: Bequest
    Ownership Start Date: Likely ca. 1900
    Ownership End Date: 1925

Bibliography List
The following Bibliography exist for this object:
  • Sarah Eisen, Ancient Greek Vessels: Pattern and Image The Trout Gallery, Dickinson College. Carlisle, PA, 2015
    Page Number: 10

Portfolio List Click a portfolio name to view all the objects in that portfolio
This object is a member of the following portfolios:

If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=BMC>cite web |url= |title=Attic Black-Gloss Lekythos (Oil Bottle) |author=Bryn Mawr College Library Special Collections |accessdate=6/7/2023 |publisher=Bryn Mawr College</ref>

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