February 1st, 2017 “The Middle Class Goes to Heaven” at CHEWDAY’S x < > i “The Middle Class Goes to Heaven” at CHEWDAY’SEGYPTIAN PREDYNASTIC BLACK-TOPPED JAR Predynastic Period, Naqada II, 3700-3250 BC Height: 15.4 cm Of flaring cylindrical form, small flat base and slightly everted rim. Black-topped pottery vessels, made of fired Nile silt, have a polished red coloured lower surface, sometimes enhanced by a red slip. Below the rim is a blackened area probably caused by the vessel being fired with its mouth pushed into the ashes with the body exposed to the air, although it is also suggested that it was placed in some type of organic matter immediately after firing. This carbonization was employed solely to obtain a desired colour effect, and was obviously deliberate for the even firing of pottery in a kiln had been practiced for centuries. The blackened area is also polished, giving it an almost metallic sheen. Literature: See Sir W. M. Flinders Petrie, ‘Prehistoric Egypt, Corpus of Prehistoric Pottery and Palettes’ (reprinted Warminster, 1974) plate IV, 27c. for the type. Provenance: Private collection London, B.A., London and New York, acquired 1980s; and thence by descent.