May 24, 2007

Black-Topped Beaker

Black-Topped Beaker

4500–3000 BC

Nile silt pottery

Diameter: 12 cm (4 3/4 in.); Overall: 14 cm (5 1/2 in.)

Gift of the John Huntington Art and Polytechnic Trust 1920.2005



Red polished vessels with black rims (known as black-topped red ware or B-ware) were the most common funerary pottery during the early Predynastic Period. The characteristic blackening of the rim was probably achieved by burying the mouth of the pot in the ashes of the kiln. The iron in the exposed part would then fire red while the covered area turned black.

See also

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.