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

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

20. Late Ottoman/Mandate and Recent Wheel-thrown 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

Wheel-thrown pottery made in small workshops of family potters persisted into the 21st century for three reasons: low cost, functionality, and nostalgia. Pots made in Rashia al-Fukhar, Jaba‘, Hebron, Gaza, Nazareth, Kerami, Zizia, and Jerusalem were relatively inexpensive because they were made from raw materials that were free for the taking. People profess a fondness for water stored in clay pots and foods cooked in clay pots. Clay jars and jugs keep water cool and filter bitter minerals. Jugs and jars were traditional refrigerators and water filters that operate without electricity or a generator. When they stop working, they were inexpensive to replace. One young Cypriot man came to Kornos village in 1986 looking for a cooking pot. A lengthy discussion with the potters developed because he was not interested in the four types of cooking pots they offered. He remembered a different shape. It was his hope that with the right cooking pot, his Australian wife could replicate the taste of foods made by his mother. The shift of certain larger traditional jars, ovens, beehives, and goat-milking pots from kitchens into gardens or cemeteries and from functional to decorative pieces has preserved the traditional industry into the 21st century. In Jordan as in Cyprus, people can acquire the full range of modern appliances made in factories. Nevertheless, there is a place for old-fashioned clay pots that remind us of home, our youth, and family. No pots fill this need better than clay cookware and water jugs. When the older generation is asked why traditional pottery remains in demand, invariably people give two reasons: the food tastes better when made the old-fashioned way, and everyone wants children and grandchildren to experience food that tastes good.

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Citation

London, Gloria. 20. Late Ottoman/Mandate and Recent Wheel-thrown Ceramics. Ancient Cookware from the Levant - An Ethnoarchaeological Perspective. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 245-256 Aug 2016. ISBN 9781781791998. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=23861. Date accessed: 16 Dec 2019 doi: 10.1558/equinox.23861. Aug 2016

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