Ancient Cookware from the Levant - An Ethnoarchaeological Perspective - Gloria London

Ancient Cookware from the Levant - An Ethnoarchaeological Perspective - Gloria London

7. Traditional Firing Techniques for Ceramics

Ancient Cookware from the Levant - An Ethnoarchaeological Perspective - Gloria London

Gloria London [+-]
Independent Scholar
Gloria London received her Ph.D from the University of Arizona. She is the author of Ancient Cookware from the Levant (2017, Equinox), Traditional Pottery in Cyrpus (1989, Philipp von Zabern), creator of a video Women Potters of Cyprus (2000, Tetraktys), and co-creator of the Museum of Traditional Pottery in Ayios Dimitrios (Marathasa), Cyprus.

Description

Firing pots is the most risky stage of pottery manufacture. Traditional craft specialists who build pots by hand use a variety of kilns – soft temporary or hard permanent and pit or above-ground. They are highly successful. Pots that touch each other do not result in fire clouds. Smaller pieces can be stacked inside larger pots without resulting in fire clouds. Rate of loss is low for the Cypriot and Filipino potters observed in long-term fieldwork. Broken pots and sherds are scarce at production locations for many reasons, including sherd reuse and the overall low rate of misfires or wasters. The final firing color varies depending on placement in the kiln, temperature, and the length of firing. The work of a single potter or more than one often fires together in the same kiln for many reasons. If necessary, pots can be refired in a kiln to enhance their color or hardness without damage. Another reason to refire pots is to burn out foods absorbed by their porous walls. Given that pits and temporary firing platforms leave hardly any trace and given the dismantling of permanent kilns once a potter stops working, few will be available for archaeologists to excavate.

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Citation

London, Gloria. 7. Traditional Firing Techniques for Ceramics. Ancient Cookware from the Levant - An Ethnoarchaeological Perspective. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 93-101 Aug 2016. ISBN 9781781791998. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=23847. Date accessed: 16 Dec 2019 doi: 10.1558/equinox.23847. Aug 2016

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