Selected and rare materials, excerpts and observations from ancient, medieval and contemporary authors, travelers and researchers about Cyprus.
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has stated, with respect to the archaic fictilia, that many of the vases found in Cyprus are probably Phœnician, but the early population of that island was somixed in its Semitic and Hellenic elements that it is difficult to determine, in the absence of inscriptions, to which race they belong. Another form of alabastron, also of Phœnician manufacture, is that shewn in fig. 180. For the loan of the woodcut representing it, I am indebted to the kindness of the Council of the British Archǽological Association. It has a long and thin body, without any neck or lip, the base rounded off in form of a bluntly 1 History of Ancient Pottery, new edit., p. 110. pointed oval, the shaft tapering gradually to the mouth. The colours of this beautiful vase are beyond description. Pink, opal, blue, and pearly colours flash from it when turned round slowly before the eyes; and beneath the iridescent granular surface, deeper and darker shades of colour appear to lie. The capacity of these vessels is not very great, but they could no doubt contain an appreciable quantity of perfume or precious unguent.Fig. 181 represents one of those beautiful amphorae of the style calledPhœnician. It is of elegant form and proportion. The handles are very delicately made. Although in form of a winejar, there can be no doubt that this little vessel was intended for the safe keeping of balsams, or costly unguents for thetoilet.Another small amphora (fig. 182), of proportions not quite so delicate as the preceding example, has a broad band of light colour round the neck in an oblique direction. The handles are broader and flatter in this specimen, for the woodcut of which I am indebted to the kindness of the. British Archǽological Association, before whom the vase, with several others, was exhibited by me last year. The contrast of the colours— deep sapphirine blues and pale yellows—is very beautifully arranged in this elegant relic. Of the same style and manufacture, but ofsomewhat different form, are the two-handled vases, of which a specimen (fig. 183) is here given. Resembling the amphora as to its bodyand neck, the foot is enriched with a small thick round base, hardly sufficient to enable the vase to stand upright securely, and the handles are more elaborately designed. The colours of these vessels are exceedingly beautiful, but they are blended so intricately, that it is difficult to describe them. Another form not uncommonly affected by Phœnician manufacturers of unguent vases is that known as the diota, or vessel furnished withtwo handles in form of the human ear. These little vessels, like the amphorǽ already described and figured, derive their form from the large ceramic jars destined to contain wine, but, from their small size and very moderate capacity, can only have been employed by their rich owners to store liquid perfumes of greatprice, and cosmetic preparations for the bath or the toilet. Fig. 184 represents a diota of this class, with dark opaque body-colour traversed spirally by bands of creamy yellow, the body well proportioned, the neck short, and the foot and flat-lipped mouth small in proportion to the bulk of the body. For this illustration and the following indebted to the British Archǽological Association three I am. A closely allied form of diota, but of very different proportions to the foregoing example, is shown in fig. 185, where the relative size of the body is reduced, and the neck, lip, ears, and foot are enlarged. In this instance, the light-coloured portions seem to develop more symmetry in their application, and partake of a more defined pattern, evidently an advance upon the simple undulations of the examples already described. The elegant conventional form of the Greek hydria, or water vessel, no doubt recommended itself to the Phœnician makers of unguentaria, for we find the form seen in fig. 186 extensively

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