Skip Navigation

Jar with Was-Scepters and Ankhs

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

Vessels with Blue-Painted Designs

The most innovative pottery of the Eighteenth Dynasty—so-called bluepainted ware—began under Thutmose III.


The pastel pigment was made from groundup blue frit, a mixture of cobalt and alum. Initially, potters relied on blue paint to accentuate small details, such as the grape cluster hanging from a vine on the wine jar in this case. Over time, though, artists began to use blue paint for more complex designs and figures.
MEDIUM Clay, paint
  • Reportedly From: Samayna, Egypt
  • DATES ca. 1426-1390 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY Dynasty 18
    PERIOD New Kingdom
    DIMENSIONS 17 5/16 x 13 in. (44 x 33 cm)  (show scale)
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    ACCESSION NUMBER 16.140
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Evangeline Wilbour Blashfield, Theodora Wilbour, and Victor Wilbour honoring the wishes of their mother, Charlotte Beebe Wilbour, as a memorial to their father, Charles Edwin Wilbour
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
    You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form (charges apply). For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch. For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright. If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact copyright@brooklynmuseum.org.
    CAPTION Jar with Was-Scepters and Ankhs, ca. 1426-1390 B.C.E. Clay, paint, 17 5/16 x 13 in. (44 x 33 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Evangeline Wilbour Blashfield, Theodora Wilbour, and Victor Wilbour honoring the wishes of their mother, Charlotte Beebe Wilbour, as a memorial to their father, Charles Edwin Wilbour, 16.140. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.16.140_erg456.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, CUR.16.140_erg456.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 9/6/2007
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Large reddish-buff pottery jar of approximately bi-conical shape with high cylindrical neck, elaborately decorated on upper half of body and neck in red, black and blue. Band of varied colors runs around the center of body. Upper part of body beautifully decorated with three large ankh symbols, two of which are flanked by Was Sceptres. Between each of these groups is an elaborate bunch of lotus flowers in red, black, and blue. Neck decorated with conventionalized lotus flowers between red, black and blue banding. Workmanship good; very similar specimens from Tell el-Amarna in Berlin. Possibly this specimen is the one referred to by Wilbour in his letter, as coming from Amarna. Condition: Large chip in rim; also body extensively chipped. Late in 1939 it was observed that the decorated surface of the jar was lifting from the body and beginning to flake off. In February 1940 the object was given several coats of cellulose acetate which seems to have remedied the fault. Surface now strong.
    RECORD COMPLETENESS
    Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome any additional information you might have.