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Iranian Long Spouted Vessels of the Third and Second Millennium BCE: Contextualizing an Enigmatic Vessel 


Long spouted vessels have a long tradition on the Iranian Plateau that spans the millennia. Well known from the Iron Age in northern Iran their context outside of this regional time frame, to date, has been understudied. This paper is part of a multi-stage research project, which aims to understand their evolution and possible ritual function both inside and outside of Iran. In this paper I present the initial data collection and findings of this research. Using previously published excavation reports, I trace these vessel’s location, material composition, and grave context. From these data I find that the long-spouted morphology has been present on the Iranian plateau since the 4th millennium BCE, and were present in Iran, Mesopotamia, and Central Asia during the 3rd and 2nd millennium BCE.  I also examine their possible ritual function by looking at their representation in figural art. These data will be used in further research where I will investigate if these vessels represent a continuation of shared ritual between these regional centers.

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