Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I
Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I
Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I
Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I
Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I
Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I
Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I
Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I

Circle of Women Bowl , Naqada I

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The original of this stunning vessel from Egypt is part of the collection at the Museum of Cairo. It dates to around 3700 BCE, making it part of the predynastic period of Egyptian history known as the Naqada I period. 

The vessel depicts a circle of women wearing white skirts who appear to be holding hands. 

The figures adorning the rim of this bowl have a striking resemblance to the clay figures crafted during the Naqada I period, and it is thought that both versions represent the groups of women involved in particular ritual practices. Unlike the figures on the bowl, which are holding hands, the individual clay figures have their arms raised in the air. This posture is also seen in figures that appear in painted hunting scenes on the surface of later Naqada II pottery —other than this, the figures have similar stylised facial features and appear to be wearing some form of skirt. 

 When these ancient women were included in scenes, they were often amongst animals and hunters and appeared to be involved in some form of ritual event related to hunting. When the arms of the figures are raised in what is often described as a pose that mimics the horns of a bull, it has been interpreted that the figure is demonstrating power within a ritual event. Therefore, these female figures likely played a vital role in the rites performed during animal sacrifices. 

This theory is lent additional weight when we find a similar ritual was performed in Pharaonic Egypt by female dancers and musicians of 'The Acacia House'. These women, called ḫnrt or ḫnrw (do not ask me how to pronounce that), practised their rituals during the 4th Dynasty (c. 2625 BCE to 2500 BCE) and were associated with dance, butchery and funeral rites. The Predynastic figures are likely precursors to these powerful female figures who formed an essential part of ritual customs within this early Egyptian culture. 


The Predynastic period in Egypt refers to the time before recorded history that spans Egypt's Paleolithic to the Neolithic Age and runs until the rise of the First Dynasty. It is commonly recognised as covering around 6000 BCE to 3150 BCE, and the Naqada Period is the main predynastic period spanning approximately 4000 BCE - 3000 BCE.

During the Naqada, Egypt developed from a series of small farming communities spread along the Nile River with different material cultures into one of the earliest urban civilisations. 


Terracotta, Reduction fired.  Gesso. 


Approx. 260 mm tall 215 mm diameter


As with all our Museum Quality Replicas, we have made this pot, as the original would have been, entirely by hand from natural clay and using replicas of the types of tool that the ancient makers would have used. As each pot varies, you may not receive the vessel in the image, but you can be sure that your pot will be one of a kind due to the variations caused by the firing process. 


We send all items using a second class postal service; if you wish to have an item sent first class, please contact me for a quote. Many Thanks

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Please be aware that due to items being handmade and finished, colour variations will occur during the making process, and each replica will have some differences.  Also, know that the item photographed may not be the one that you receive, and colours can appear differently on different screens.  Please ensure you look at all the images to get a fully formed idea of the item you are ordering as we try to capture the variations within the images we share.  If you prefer a specific colour variation, please contact us before ordering. 

Don't take our word for it

Hello Graham and Sarah, I wanted to message because I ordered your holy grail pot for my dad's birthday and he is over the moon with it.

Rachel Frankish

Many thanks again for all of the pottery - this will help bring our new Heritage learning programme to life!

Nottingham University Museum

I love it! I love everything about it, what it represents, why you made it and the history behind it. It was worth the wait! Thank you so much.

Gillian Castle