This very early predynastic beaker is a key part of the Bexley Museum Collection. It is over 6,000 years old and from the Naqada I period between 4,000 and 3,600BC.
Black topped ware was made in a range of shapes and sizes and was included within burials intended to contain food and drink for the dead in the afterlife.
Such beakers were hand made without a turntable constructed by coiling clay and smoothing the ridges. The basic structure is made of Nile Silt clay. The smooth polished finish is created by a top glaze which is heated on an open fire to bring out the red colour. The black top is formed by turning the pot up directly onto the flames and increasing the oxidisation process.