Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Female Figure Jars

Anthropoid Jars – used for holding surplus breast milk for nursing mother - Metropolitan Museum of Art, Dynasty 18, Saqqara, Pottery and Paint, Rogers Fund.
The act of nursing and breast milk was considered important for the well -being of the living child and in the process of rebirth. A reliable supply of breast milk whether from the mother or a wet nurse was deemed vital because of its life sustaining qualities.
Breast milk was even included in medical prescriptions for head colds, burns, rashes and fever in adults as well as infants.
Interestingly the capacity of these jars is equivalent to approximately the amount of milk that a mother’s breast can produce at one feeding.
Female figure jars were only produced for a short period from the reign of Thutmose lll to Amenhotep lll and are all probably products of a single workshop.

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