Even 5500 years ago people kept their possessions in boxes and trays. This one dates to the Naqada II period (c.3500-3300BCE), and is fairly small – just over 6 inches on the longest side. We’re looking at the base here, and while I expect it once had a lid it doesn’t any more.

It’s decorated in the typical style of the period that we refer to as “Decorated Ware”. On the sides you can just about see in the photo there are zig-zag lines and mounds – water and hills. On the base the water is flanked by two lines of long legged, long necked birds.

There is debate as to whether birds drawn like this are ostriches or flamingos, but in this case flamingos seems most plausible. The way they are lined up close together makes them look like they are walking along the water in step, which is something that real flamingos do.

Box Decorated with Flamingos. Provenance unknown. Predynastic Period, Late Naqada II, c.3500-3300 BCE. Acc. No.: 10.130.1175

It’s not known where it was found, but it is now in the Met Museum (acc. no. 10.130.1175).

See it on my photo site: https://photos.talesfromthetwolands.org/picture.php?/1421/

Jigsaw Puzzles:
easier: https://www.jigsawplanet.com/?rc=play&pid=35ec34cb543b
harder: https://www.jigsawplanet.com/?rc=play&pid=032fe6c03ecb

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