previous sub-section
Three The Dema Tower
next sub-section

Coarse Wares

12. Water pitcher Figure A

DP -2S-11. Two nonjoining fragments of rim. Pres. H. 0.02 m, est. D. of rim ca. 0.11 m. Outturned, thickened rim, rounded on top, concave below, possibly broken at point where rim springs from a raised ridge around top of neck.

For the shape, cf. "Vail House" nos. 67 and 68, figure 8, p. 382; and Corinth VII.iii, no. 631, plate 24. Evidently of non-Attic and non-Corinthian origin, this type of water pitcher became extremely common from the last third of the fourth century B.C. onward; see the discussions by Thompson 1934, 465, and Corinth VII.iii, 113, with the foreign examples from contexts of ca. 350-250 B.C. cited in note 14. At the Vari house it occurs in an assemblage dated ca. 350-275 B.C. For examples of the later fourth and early third centuries, see Miller 1974, nos. 46, 47, with plate 33; numerous Hellenistic examples are illustrated by Braun 1970, plate 82.2, 3.

13. Water pitcher Figure A

DP -4S-12. Two joining fragments of base. Pres. H. 0.012 m, est. D. of base 0.077 m. Flat base thickened to form offset at bottom of wall.

Probably a smaller pitcher similar to no. 12 above.

14. Transport/storage amphora Figure B, Figure 30

DP -2S-3. Fifteen joining fragments giving toe and lower body, at least seventeen nonjoining fragments from body as high as the shoulder. Pres. H.


0.265 m, est. max. pres. D. 0.368 m. Knob toe with shallow depression in undersurface, rounded flange around knob, D. 0.09 m, narrowing above to junction with swelling convex body.

A similar toe comes from the Athenian Agora deposit A 17: 3, which is dated ca. 320-290 B.C. , Agora XII, 383; cf. P 20472, from deposit D 16:1, dated to the fourth century B.C. , Agora XII, 387. A complete amphora with a roughly similar toe was found at Corinth in fill of the late fourth to early third century B.C. ; see Robinson 1969, 10, no. 4, with plate 2 no. 4.

15. Transport/storage amphora Figure B, Figure 30

DP -2S-13, DP -3S-15. Large fragment of toe and lower body, many fragments from body as high as the shoulder. Pres. H. 0.24 m, est. max. pres. D. 0.28 m. Knob toe with deep depression in undersurface, rounded flange around knob, D. 0.072 m, concave above in junction with narrow body, gradually flaring to convex profile.

Cf. McCredie 1966, 24 no. 12, and no. 25 in plates 4, 20e: late fourth century B.C. Also similar are Athenian Agora nos. P 20509, from the blind passage of Group B, Thompson 1934, 330-32, which is deposit H 16:3, containing much material of the late fourth century B.C. ; see Agora XII, 393; P 20431, fourth century B.C. , from the NW room of the Poros Building; P 25945, from deposit F 17:3—POU (1): second half of the fourth century B.C. , Agora XII, 390.

16. Transport/storage amphora

DP -4S-16. Eight joining fragments of lower body, toe not preserved, other nonjoining body fragments. Pres. H. 0.22 m, est. max. pres. D. 0.28 m. Lower body similar in shape to no. 15 above.

Numerous coarse body fragments recovered throughout the excavated area are likely to be amphora sherds, although some may be uncombed coarse kalathos sherds (see no. 20 below). Two amphora handle fragments were found, but no neck or rim fragments were identified.

17. Basin

DP -3N-27. Body fragment. Single fragment of a large, thick-walled vessel, probably a large basin. Horizontal relief band on exterior, with attachment point for a horizontal handle immediately below relief band.

Possibly a beehive. Cf. the "Orestada" vessel, a basin with horizontal handles from the Rachi site near the Isthmus of Corinth, dated ca. 360-240 B.C. , Broneer 1958, no. 42, with plate 14b; for its identification as a beehive, see Kardara 1961, 264-65, with plate 81 figure 6; cf. also "Vari House" 399, with plate 78c. The identification of the "Orestada" vessel as a beehive has now been questioned; see Crane and Graham 1985, 160-61. Regardless of the original purpose of basins like this specimen or the "Orestada" vessel, it is possible that this specimen was a basin used as a makeshift beehive; cf. note 20 below.


18. Beehive kalathos lid Figure 31

DP -2S-4. Twenty-seven fragments giving complete lid, chips missing. D. varies from 0.40 to 0.405 m. Lid flat on inner side, outer side has two concentric relief bands, D. of outer band 0.285 m, D. of inner band 0.135 m, around a central boss. Crescent-shaped indentation in edge of lid, 0.04 m across, 0.015 m deep. Four holes piercing lid are set in pairs alongside the outer relief band; pairs are opposite each other, in line with the indentation on the edge, each pair of holes 0.08 m apart. Raised lug, H. 0.016 m, extends along the outer relief band between the two holes nearest the identation; outer relief band on side opposite lug is raised slightly to form a second lug.

The association of lids of this type with combed kalathoi, as no. 20 below, and their interpretation as ceramic beehives have been established in the publication of the Vail house in Attica; see "Vail House" 397-414, 443-52. Cf. also Agora XII, 217-18. Beehive lids and combed kalathos fragments are illustrated in "Vari House" figures 13, 18-21, and plates 75-77, 83-86; known parallels are listed in note 21, p. 398; on the form and function of the lids, see 409, 446. The examples from the Vari house are dated by their context to between the third quarter of the fourth century and the first quarter of the third, pp. 414-18. There seems to be little chronologically significant variation in details of shape and size in beehive kalathoi and their lids between the late fifth century B.C. and the Roman period.

19. Beehive kalathos lid Figure 30

DP -2S-22. Single fragment, broken all around. Max. pres. L. 0.143 m. Lid without concentric relief bands. Deeply impressed epsilon in what is probably the center of the upper side, H. of letter 0.053 m, L. of upper and lower crossbars 0.045 m, center crossbar shorter. Trace of hole in lid at broken edge farthest from epsilon.

The identification of this fragment as a beehive kalathos lid with an impressed epsilon in the center is assured by comparison with the larger fragment of such a lid in the collection of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens (provenance unknown), illustrated in figure 30. This fragment of nearly half a lid, est. D. 0.38 m, has a crescent-shaped indentation in its outer edge, 0.027 m deep, adjacent to which is a lug or ledge, H. 0.008 m, L. 0.075 m, tangent to two holes piercing the lid. At the center of the lid is an epsilon, partially broken away, impressed while the day was wet with a blunt tool, not a stamp. L. of lower crossbar 0.048 m, center crossbar shorter. The clay of this lid is buff (5YR 7/6 reddish yellow) with red inclusions.

20. Internally combed beehive kalathoi Figure 31

DP -2S+3S-23, DP -4S-24. Twenty-five fragments, mostly nonjoining, of bases and bodies, no rims. Average est. D. of bases 0.19 m. Base and body fragments completely or partially covered on interior surfaces with vertical combing.


Figure C

For identification of these as ceramic beehive fragments, see no. 18 above. One base fragment is in the collection of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, a surface find from the Dema tower, site A-19.

previous sub-section
Three The Dema Tower
next sub-section