A "bil bil" or poppy flask with a fat body, long bottle neck with spreading lip and two moulded rings at junction with the neck and handle.
Mostly black but with some attractive red areas where the fabric was reduced in the firing.
The name Base Ring Ware comes from the base of the vessel, which is made in the shape of a ring, and is added on after completion of the body. The ware is handbuilt, and usually hase very thin walls. The monochrome fabric is fired to different shades of red and brown, often with a black core, and covered by a red, brown, or black slip which is usually burnished. It is often decorated with relief lines (Base Ring I), or painted with matt white linear decorations (Base Ring II), thought perhaps to imitate the white latex oozing from the cuts of an opium poppy head; a theory put forward first mby Merrilees.
The color of the ceramic as well as certain detailing indicates an attempt to copy or make metallic-looking objects in a less expensive medium. It is uniquely Cypriot, and as such, was extensively traded and highly valued in the ancient world. Its presence is diagnostic for the Late Cypriot period.
Much of this ware actually comes from Egypt and nowadys more so from Syro-Palastine to which regions it was extensively exported.
Late Cypriot I 1650 BC -1475 BC
Cf. Sydney, Nicholson 52.412, from Abydos (Base-ring I Ware)
From a named UK collection