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International Conference
Origin of the State. Predynastic and Early Dynastic Egypt

(Cracow, Poland: 28th August - 1st September 2002)
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The Pottery Tradition at Tell el-Farkha


Muzeum Archeologiczne, Poznan (Poland)


The excavations carried out at Tell el-Farkha between 1998 and 2002 by the Polish archaeological expedition have shown the existence of seven occupation phases which date from the Lower Egyptian culture to the Early Old Kingdom. For each of the phases, a large assemblage including pottery, flint, stone and bone artefacts has been discovered. Additionally, each phase is characterised by different architectural levels. Among the finds recorded during the fieldwork, pottery is the only one found in very large quantities. Because it is the most easily available artefact to archaeologist, we had to examine thousands of sherds every year. Thanks to the continuous occupation of the site, we are able to study the pottery tradition and all changes it underwent. Taking in consideration the different characteristics of pottery such as fabric type, surface treatment, mode of production, vessel form or decoration pattern we have distinguished different stages of the development in the production of pottery at Tell el-Farkha. This study provides us with very important information concerning the activities of societies in the past. The study of the pottery tradition, together with the results of the investigation of other types of objects and archaeological features helps us to understand a small part of the daily life in the settlement from the Predynastic period up unto the Early Old Kingdom.


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