Kalathoi And Kalathiskoi


With figure decoration (pyxis-kalathos)

Flaring, with and without perforations 9-17 Group 1 PI. 4

520-528 PL 51

39 Age -+ Thompson, Hesperia 3,1934, p. 324, A 53, fig. 8; p. 343, B 39, fig. 23; p. 417, E 127, fig. 100. Kerameikos: Braun, AM 85,1970, p. 136, no. 23; p. 141, nos. 90-92; p. 143, nos. 108,109; p. 145, nos. 118,119; p. 148, no. 139; p. 155, no. 178; comparative photographs pi. 82:2 and 3.

40 For discussion of the changes, see Braun, AM 85, 1970, pp. 165-166. I am grateful to Professor U. Knigge and her staff for access to these pitchers.

41 Corinth VII, iii, nos. 633-642, pp. 113-115, where they are called handle-ridged jugs. Since the type represented by 156 also has a handle ridge, the distinction between the forms is more clearly expressed by the width of the necks. The body profiles are fairly similar.

42 There is a very fragmentary neck-rim-and-handle fragment, in fine ware, without any decoration, in lot 6722 (6722:2). It has a central neck ridge, from which comes the strap handle. The rim flares slightly but without the heavy downturn of 393 and similar jugs. Lot 6722, a cistern in Building L-M:28, has some Classical material, but the pottery is mostly later 4th century, going into the early 3rd. This fragment could be an earlier or variant form of the narrow-necked pitcher, smaller than the catalogued example.

Kalathiskos, type 1

18,19 Group 1

PI. 4

32 Group 2

Fig. 5, PI. 5


PI. 51

Kalathiskos, type 2

55 Group 4

PI. 8


PI. 51

Transitional to type 3

38 Group 3

Fig. 5, PI. 6


PI. 51

Kalathiskos, type 3

35-37,39 Group 3

Fig. 5, PI. 6

56-60 Group 4

Fig. 5, PI. 8

64-72 Group 5

Fig. 5, PI. 9

100-102 Group 6

Fig. 5, PI. 13


Fig. 5, PI. 51

Kalathiskos, type 4

103-106 Group 6

Fig. 5, PI. 13

141-149 Group 7

Fig. 5, PI. 14

168-171 Group 8

Fig. 5, PI. 18

With basket handles


PI. 51

Handmade of coarse clay

20, 21 Group 1

PI. 4


PI. 51

  • See catalogue entry.
  • See catalogue entry.

There are 100 inventoried examples. That is not an excessive number, for the kalathiskos is the predominant vessel in the Demeter Sanctuary. When work began on the pottery in 1970, an attempt was made to count the kalathiskoi. Before completing study of the pottery excavated in 1961,43 over 2000 separate kalathiskos bases had been noted. It seemed pointless to continue. The 100 entries give the range of shape and decoration. It is the only vessel that appears in significant numbers in every area and during every period of the Sanctuary. Thus changes in shape are important, since the kalathiskos is very often the only well-preserved vase in a context. It is even found in the shallow fills of the dining rooms on the Lower Terrace, where little pottery of votive nature is found. Simply, there are so many of them that virtually no stratum, no matter how few the sherds, is without at least one fragmentary example.

Most of the inventoried examples are from the 1961 and 1962 excavations, with the major exception of the Group 1 kalathiskoi, found in 1970 (9-21). Although kalathiskoi were continually found in subsequent years, it was unnecessary to inventory more. In dating contexts, one may simply note the kalathiskoi that are similar to catalogued examples.

Dunbabin gave "a warning on the difficulty of dating these vases."44 Yet, for the reasons given above, it was essential to attempt a chronological framework for the shape. The kalathiskos is a votive and thus tends to be conservative in shape. Dating more precisely than by 50-year intervals is difficult, and the chronology is still tentative. The chronological outline was ascertained by comparison of kalathiskoi in different strata in the Demeter Sanctuary with those from fills and deposits elsewhere in Corinth, particularly in the Potters' Quarter, the only other area producing sufficient quantities of the vase for evaluation of shape changes.45

The chronology applies only to the small kalathiskos adapted from the concave-sided pyxis, measuring about 0.045 to 0.055 m. in height. Group 3 contains three very large examples of the shape in type 3 profile,

43 One month of excavation, May 23-June 22, produced 31 separate pottery contexts but none so extensive as the fills found in 1962 or in the 1964/1965 season.

44 Perachora II, p. 303, commenting on the kalathiskoi.

45 For deposits and dates of the Potters' Quarter material, see Corinth XV, ii, pp. 21-25; XV, iii, pp. 4-9.

32 38

57 542 64 543

70 545 100 71

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