Manufacturing Stages Involved In A Pottery Bowl Commerce Essay

The production of a clayware bowl consists of a figure of fabricating techniques runing from resource choice to the application of glazes. These phases are outlined within the Chaine Operatoire, a term mentioning to the series in which a piece of clayware could be produced, used, destroyed and eventually deposited ; this essay will concentrate on the first of these phases outlined in Table 1 below ( Rice 2005: 115, Knappet 2005: 678 ) . Throughout the fabrication of a clayware bowl a figure of hints are left on any given vas and these hints can be scientifically analysed to give grounds of these procedures through macroscopic, microscopic or chemical techniques. This essay will endeavor to depict these techniques through the usage of assorted illustrations in relation to their associated location within the Chaine Operatoire.

Table 1: Chief phases in clayware industry

Phase figure

Beginning: Orton, Tyers & A ; Vince 1993: 114 tabular array 10.1

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The first phase to be discussed is that of resource procurance and readying ; in these phases the natural stuffs used to make the bowl are extracted from the land and refined by the thrower ( Knappet 2005: 678 ) . The resources which are required include H2O, fuel, clay and if required non-plastic inclusions ( Orton et al. 1993: 114, Sinopoli 1991: 9-10 ) . This primary subdivision nevertheless leaves small hint on the vas itself due to its nature.

The readying of the resources will frequently imply the add-on of a pique or the remotion of drosss by manus or through floatation ( Sinopoli 1991: 16-17, Orton et al. 1993: 114 ) . Temper within clay is normally a non-plastic stuff which makes the clay easier to work and is besides used to forestall the breakage of the vas during fire ( Knappet 2005: 678 ) . These extra stuffs can frequently be seen through macroscopic or microscopic techniques ( Knappet 2005: 678 ) . Early Prehistoric clayware gatherings within South Eastern Britain for illustration frequently contain non-plastic stuffs such as flint or crushed shells ( Varndell & A ; Freestone 1997 33-4, Cleal 1995 ) . These stuffs therefore leave grounds of clay polish within the finished merchandise, which are frequently seeable macroscopically through coloring material difference or raised countries ( Varndell & A ; Freestone 1997: 34 ) .

The pique added to peculiar gatherings can besides be utilised to place the country in which the stuff was extracted. Peter Day ‘s work on ceramics from Bronze Age Crete is one illustration of such a method where microscopic and macroscopic methods were used to place piques and their associated beginnings Knappet 2005: 680, Day 1999: 1029-30 ) . It is argued that the pique originated from a riverine environment as opposed to the antecedently thought Marine ( Knappet 2005 mentioning Myer & A ; Betancourt 1990 ) . This is due to the sand within the vass being of a individual geological type instead than the mix that occurs within the local beach sand ( Wilson & A ; Day 1994: 52, Day et al. 1999 ) .

The techniques mentioned above are nevertheless non wholly declarative of temper add-on, as it is possible for annealing to happen of course within some clay sedimentations ( Knappet 2005: 678 ) , there are nevertheless quantitative techniques available which take the mineralogy of the vas into history ( Knappet 2005: 680-2 ) . Whitbread for illustration utilises this technique to find the mode of grain size of Greek conveyance amphorae by trying distribution in a thin subdivision ( Knappet 2005: 680 mentioning Whitbread 1995 ) . The frequence of the consequences are so used to construe the clay as unimodal or bimodal. If the consequences are unimodal ; the vas was created using a of course happening beginning of clay with no grounds of human change ( Knappet 2005: 680 mentioning Whitbread 1995: 389 ) . If the consequences suggest a bimodal mineralogy nevertheless the matrix has been altered by adult male through the add-on of a pique. This reduces the consequence of the pique on the designation of the clay beginning itself. Whitbread himself utilized this technique to turn out that peculiar Greek amphorae, such as Chian Fabric category 1 and Mendean amphora Fabric category 1 had been tempered by deliberate human action ( Whitbread 1995: 349 ) .

The clay beginning can besides frequently be identified from the finished merchandise through the usage of Neutron Activation Analysis ( NAA ) . This is a technique used to obtain a chemical profile of ancient clayware and this information can be used to find a vass birthplace ( Perlmon 1984: 117-119 ) . Perlmon for illustration utilized this technique on Eastern Terra Sigillata found in Israel and discovered two major beginnings for the clayware sample selected, indentified by their comparative differences in footings of chemical composing ( Perlmon 1984: 128-32 ) . The consequences shown in table 2 suggest this difference, peculiarly with the elements of Lanthanum ( La ) and Thorium ( Th ) .

Table 2: Eastern Terra Sigillata



( 157 samples )

Cyprian clayware ( 18 samples )

Cypriot clay

Fe %

5.66 A±.30







































Beginning: Perlmon 1984: 130 tabular array Four

There are nevertheless some clayware gatherings which appear to hold had drosss removed. The method involves the usage of H2O to suspend the lighter clay atoms above those of the drosss, frequently known as levigation and leaves a similar brand up to that of a unimodal sample when analysed, deducing that the remotion of drosss is non traceable ( Sinopoli 1991: 16 ) .

The following phase mentioned in table 1 is the defining of the natural stuffs into its concluding signifier ( Knappet 2005: 684, Shepard 1980: 54-55 ) . This occurs in a figure of ways which can be divided into two chief methods ; that of manus forming and wheel throwing as shown in table 3. These techniques are nevertheless non ever used entirely, as grounds on certain ceramic gatherings have two or more of the organizing methods on individual vass. The clayware created by the Papago peoples of Southern Arizona for illustration is a modern ethnographical survey where multiple organizing methods were utilised on a individual vas ( Rice 2005: 141 ) . The bulk of the vass formed by this group utilize a combination of coiling, paddling and bulging molding ( Fontana et al. 1962: 52-70 ) .

Table 3: Forming techniques of clayware


Slab modeling






These organizing methods are indentified in a figure of ways, chiefly through the striations located on the vas which can be viewed either macroscopically or through usage of a Scanning Electron Microscope ( SEM ) . Strias follow a peculiar patterning caused by the application of force per unit area upon the vas during this phase ( Rice 2005 mentioning Rye 1981: 59-81 ) . The coiling technique for illustration foliages behind round or near round striations on the interior surface of the vas due to the manner in which the vas is created ( Rice 2005: 127 ) . The clayware is formed utilizing a figure of spirals which are so built up and smoothed over at the bordering subdivisions of the clay due to their likelihood of fracturing throughout subsequently procedure ( Rice 2005: 127-128 ) . The striations shown in figure 1 ( overleaf ) are nevertheless frequently destroyed by secondary techniques such as through the paddling technique ( Rice 2005: 137 mentioning Solheim 1954 ) . This is where the partly formed vas is repeatedly beaten either with or without opposing force per unit area ( Rice 2005: 137 ) . This method of secondary forming leaves a series of feelings on the inside of the vas and besides improves adhering between sections ( Rice 2005 mentioning Scheans 1977: 13, 50 ) ) . The paddling technique appears to be associated with spiral built clayware ; but in some countries such as Pakistan the technique is used on wheel-thrown jars to enlarge the organic structure of the vas ( Rice 2005: 137 ) . Figure 1 illustrates these and other techniques and their associated striations ( overleaf ) .

A Scanning Electron Microscope is used to exemplify these striations as structural alterations within the cloth which have frequently been smoothed over by the thrower prior to drying and firing ( Rice 2005: 401-402 ) . The instrument itself works through the fire of negatrons at the sample and making an image of its internal construction through the alterations in energy recorded by the device ( Rice 2005: 401 )

Figure 1: diagram demoing forming striations Beginning: Berg 2008: fig. 1

The 4th phase in the Chaine Operatoire is that of pre-firing techniques, which are frequently macroscopically seeable on the surface of the finished vas ( Knappet 2005: 687 ) . The bulk of these techniques are applied to wet clay due to the nature of the sweetening and many of these interventions appear to be hold a chiefly aesthetic intent. One exclusion nevertheless occurs on useful vass such as cooking pots where the interior surface is roughened to better heat transportation during the cookery procedure ( Rice 2005: 138 ) . This method of intervention is macroscopically seeable on the interior go forthing big grounds of this procedure on the finished merchandise ( Rice 2005: 232 ) .

The outer surface of a vas besides changes during this procedure go forthing ornament such as faux pass, glazes and surface supplanting for the archeologist to analyze ( Rice 2005: 147 ) . The primary process applied to the bulk of clayware vass is that of smoothing or texturing the outer surface by manus or through the usage of tools ( Rice 2005: 138 ) . Smoothing in peculiar can be differentiated from other methods based on the coating of the vas ; a vas smoothed by manus for case will go forth all right striations and a matte type coating ; as the atoms are non aligned as when burnished by a tool which leaves a surface luster ( Rice 2005: 138 ) .

The staying methods of surface sweetening can be divided into two chief classs ; foremost enhancements that move or take clay and secondly those that add extra stuffs on or to the surface of the vas itself ( Rice 2005: 146 ) . The first of these techniques includes ornament such as stomping or incising ( Rice 2005: 146 ) . This leaves really small hint on the stuff in chemical footings but the ornament can be analysed itself in footings of its manner and the context in which it was produced ( Rice 2005: 248-9 ) . Scientific analysis can nevertheless be done through microscopic examination of the sweetenings themselves. Incising techniques used on clayware for illustration can be examined in this manner to state which type of tool was utilised in the formation of raised countries, and the angle at which the scratch is made ( Shepard 1980: 198-202 ) . A figure of possible techniques used to incise a vas are shown in figure 2 ( overleaf ) .

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Figure 2: Incising techniques Source: Shepard 1980: Fig. 15

Glazes and faux pass are much more interesting in footings of their scientific analysis and related techniques, go forthing a figure of options for analysis. Paints and faux pass for illustration can be examined through the usage of X-ray diffraction and Proton Induced X-ray Emissions ( Knappet 2005: 688 ) . These and other techniques were utilised on the Kamares Ware of Crete, which utilised both faux pass and pigment on their Middle Bronze Age clayware ( Knappet 2005 mentioning Noll 1978 ) . The consequences of the survey suggest that the two faux pass of ruddy and black were composed of two differing signifiers of Fe ; hematite and magnetic iron-ore severally, whereas the white pigment is composed of Calcium Silicate ( Knappet 2005 mentioning Faber et Al. 2002 ) . This probe nevertheless besides utilized SEM due to find how the slips themselves worked during the firing procedure as the red is created through oxidization, whilst the black is produced through decrease ( Knappet 2005 mentioning Faber et Al. 2002 ) ; these firing techniques will be discussed below within relation to the Chaine Operatoire.

The following phase of the industry of a vas is that of the drying procedure ( table 1 above ) , this procedure leaves no hint in relation to the finished merchandise as no chemical or physical alterations are made to the vas ( Rice 2005: 152 ) . The procedure is nevertheless necessary to forestall the vas from fracturing during the following phase, that of fire.

This procedure involves the placing of the clayware upon a beginning of heat through either a kiln or unfastened fire and leting the clayware to chemically bond within. This creates the concluding merchandise unless post-firing interventions are applied to heighten the merchandise. This phase in the Chaine Operatoire is peculiarly of import as if jobs occur the vas is frequently unserviceable ( Rice 2005: 152-3 ) . The hints left on the finished vas are those of color of the original clayware every bit good as that of any faux pas or glaze applied and this coloring material can be utilised to gauge the firing temperatures of that peculiar piece of clayware and whether the fire caused oxidization or decrease of any Fe oxides within the beginning ( Shepard 1980: 103 ) . Pottery shows the greatest coloring material difference in footings of oxidization between 700-900EsC, as the coloring material differences are more marked ( Shepard 1980: 103 ) . The Kamamres wares of Crete for illustration appear to hold undergone a figure of fires to make both the black and ruddy colors ( Shepard 1980: 104 ) .

The hardness of the finished vas can besides be examined to find the firing temperature, but by uniting the techniques one can analyze the alterations in hardness and coloring material throughout the vas, deducing the degree of control over the temperature and atmosphere during the fire procedure ( Knappt 2005: 690-2 ) . These methods must nevertheless be combined with chemical analysis techniques as the color and oxidization degrees of any given clayware beginning varies harmonizing to the minerals within the clay paste prior to firing ( Knappet 2005: 690-2 ) .

The concluding procedure of the Chaine Operatoire is that of station fire interventions ; these are extra steps applied to pottery in order to better the vas by cut downing its permeableness or bettering its overall visual aspect ( Rice 2005: 163 ) . These interventions are frequently organic in nature, peculiarly in relation to modern ethnographic illustrations ( Rice 2005: 163 ) . The throwers in West Africa for illustration apply liquid assorted with cods of the locust trees to seal the pores of the clayware and to surface the surface ( Nicklin 1981: 177 )

In decision there are many hints left on clayware for the archeologist to analyze, both chemically and macroscopically. The hints are hard to observe peculiarly in relation to vass that have been used for peculiar maps as changeless warming and reheating for illustration can recolour a vas cut downing its hints in footings of firing temperature. The possible fabrication phases are besides merely portion of the vass existent Chaine Operatoire as procedures such as deposition and usage wear must besides be taken into history.


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