Fresh Decorative Patterns on the EBA Pottery of Yanik Tepe (Iran) from the Reorganized Assemblages at the National Museum of Iran
Following its inauguration, the National Museum of Iran used to be entrusted with the storing of all objectsobtained from archaeological investigations over several decades. Yet access to stored objects began gettingincreasingly difficult over time. For that reason, a lion share of the stored objects remained unpublished. Whilstselect works on display at museum halls have their own importance, a full insight into cultural, economic, politicaland technological developments will inevitably call for a study of a given cultural complex as a whole, whichconsists of stone tools and blades, pottery, faunal remains, and all other vestiges of the pertinent society. Hence, areorganization work planned for the Museum's storerooms, as part of which the author embarked on a study of thepottery assemblages from the Early Bronze Age levels of Yanik Tepe deriving from C. Burney's 1960s excavations.The main question was: To what extent did the newcomer potters communicate their homeland artistic traditionson this pottery? Data from museum and library enquiries provided the basis for a comparative study. The datasetwas analyzed qualitatively, and the study adopted a culture-historical approach. Statistical analysis revealed thepredominating decorative scheme to be one consisting of a combination of geometric patterns, like simple bands,with animal or bird motifs, an observation reflecting the import of these species to the local subsistence economythat essentially relied on raising livestock and hunting. Comparison to the material from other spheres across thegeographic extent of the culture showed that while the homeland legacy is mirrored in a few cases, there are alsoexamples reflecting experimentations of local artisans.
National Museum of Iran