During the last half of the sixth millennium B.C., the influence of the Halafian culture spread from Mesopotamia and the Iranian frontiers westward to Syria, parts of Anatolia, and possibly Greece. The vessel above and those pictured in the margins of the following pages are hand-built products of the Halafian potters at Arpachiyah (Iraq), whose skilfully fired ceramics far surpassed the later wheel-made pottery of Babylonia. Framed by checkered patterns or bands of light and dark triangles, the centrepieces of these shallow bowls usually form either a multipetaled rosette or some variation of the cross. (after Mallowan and Rose, 1935)

From Plato Prehistorian by Mary Settegast


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