Mysteries of Kourion

November 26, 2012

I am working on a year long project conducting a condition survey of the objects at the Penn Museum from Kourion, Cyprus, that were excavated under the direction of George McFadden.

This may not sound all that glamorous, but it has some definite perks.  In particular it means that I get to examine and photograph thousands of objects (literally). Among the objects I have examined so far, there have been a few that have made me pause and say to myself, “huh… what exactly is this?”  First and foremost among these is the object shown here (http://www.penn.museum/collections/object/29523 ).

Front view of 49-12-664

Now from THIS view it looks kinda like a pilgrim flask, like this one, also from Kourion (http://www.penn.museum/collections/object/209460 ).

Front view of 49-12-693


However, from a side view, you can see it’s got some unusual features.  First, there is that knob on the front… what was that for?  And unlike the pilgrim flask, which is all curves, it has a flat back.

Even more perplexing than its form though is the fact that this object still has SOMETHING inside!

Hopefully at some point in the near future I will be able to report to you what exactly is in there rattling around, but for the time being, it will have to remain a mystery.