Amphora - this ... The size and types of amphorae

Amphora - a special kind of cookware that has received widespread in ancient Greece and ancient Rome.Amphorae come in different sizes and shapes.Furthermore, they also carry a specific symbol.Which one?This you will learn from this article.

Amphora - it ...

First of all, you need to figure out what is the amphora?

meaning of the word amphora is very interesting.From Greek is translated as "a container with two handles."

Amphora - a special elongated vessel having a handle on both sides.Quite often at the bottom of the amphorae conical, pointed.The material from which made the utensils in ancient times, most of the clay.Less common are the bronze amphora.

In ancient Greece and Rome, the amphorae have different functions.For example, they were used:

  • as a storage tank of liquid products (various oils, wine, milk, juice or honey);
  • as a reward for victory in sports;
  • as a funerary urns or for installation on the burial mounds.

Dimensions of amphorae can be very different.In general, they contain a 5 to 50 liters of liquid.And in ancient Greece, an amphora (the volume of which was 26.03 liters) even used as a unit - the Greek "talent".

Classification amphorae

Heinrich Dressel - a German scholar and archaeologist who just studied the ancient amphorae.Below you can see how this man looked like.In particular, he has developed a detailed typology of ancient amphorae.From domestic researchers significant contribution to the study of this type of dishes made archaeologist Sergei Monakhov.

in its catalog (published in 1899 in Germany) Heinrich Dressel introduced 45 varieties of Roman amphorae.He was able to determine the age of each of them.I helped him in the names of the consuls, which are often printed on all amphorae.It should be noted that the classification of Dressel enjoyed until now, when you need to identify one or the other archaeological finds.

first 6 forms in the typology Dressel - a Roman amphora of wine.They date back to the I st.BC.e.- II art.n.e.Amphora from 7 th to 12 th in the catalog - a Spanish vessels to fish storage.Next in the catalog of the German scientist had shown later instances of amphorae, which are dated III century or even later.

Greek amphora - a symbol of life and death

Amphora symbolize both life and death.How can this be?

Once, during excavations of Chersonesus - ancient Greek city in Crimea, archaeologists discovered a strange amphorae, which were buried remains of children.Thus, these vessels in ancient times played the role of coffins.Besides, the graves of adults, often found mounted on top of the amphora.

On the other hand, the Greek amphora symbolizes the female womb.Moreover, it intentionally endowed female traits.So, even elements of amphoras were identified as follows: neck, torso, legs and arms.And these names were given amphora is not accidental.

Thus, amphora - a vessel symbolizing a well as life and death.

Where and how to find ancient amphorae?

Archaeological excavations are conducted regularly and in different parts of our planet.During these excavations is very often find a variety of valuable artifacts, including ancient amphorae.

These ancient vessels found both on land and under water.In the first case, apply special archaeological tools: spatulas and brushes.For a targeted search of metal amphora are so-called metal detectors or magnetometers, which respond to all sorts of changes in the magnetic field of a specific area.By the way, most of the clay amphorae also have its magnetic field, because in the process of firing the clay gets plenty of oxidized iron.

From the depths of the sea amphora will raise to the surface normal air.On the seabed there are entire "cemetery" of such ancient pottery.They could be formed either as a result of the collapse of the ship with a similar cargo, either by simple discarding of used amphorae overboard.Anyway amphorae appear at the bottom of the sea depths.

Today archaeologists often recovered amphorae from the Black, Adriatic and Mediterranean.The origin of these amphorae, mostly ancient Greek, Roman and Phoenician.

In conclusion ...

Thus, amphora - is not only an element of ancient pottery.They are used not only for food storage.Archaeologists have repeatedly found Roman or Greek amphora with the ashes of the dead and even buried in their babies.

ancient amphorae were made of clay, sometimes of wood or some metals.Clay amphora sculpted by hand.Often they are also adorned with paintings, ornaments or certain drawings.Today, archaeologists have found many ancient amphorae, which are the most important artifacts of a particular culture or historical era.