Art of the Ancient World, C. 5000 B.c.e.–400 C.E.

Art of the Ancient Near East

What is the Warka Vase?

Also known as the Carved Vase of Uruk, the Warka Vase is a three-foot-tall alabaster vase found by archaeologists near the White Temple. The vase is decorated with stories that have been divided into registers, or bands, almost like a comic strip that tells a story of humans making offerings to the gods. The lowest register depicts the natural world of water and plants while above this are domesticated animals. The middle register features nude men holding baskets, and the top register shows a king giving an offering to the Sumerian goddess Inanna. The figures in the registers are shown with their heads and legs in profile view, but with torsos and shoulders in a three-quarter view.


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