Container with Spiral Decoration

Period: Late period

Date: ca. 500 B.C.–A.D. 300

Culture: Thailand (Ban Chiang)

Medium: Bronze

Dimensions: H. 8 7/8 in. (22.5 cm)

Classification: Metalwork

Credit Line: Samuel Eilenberg Collection, Bequest of Samuel Eilenberg, 1998

Accession Number: 2000.284.53


The large flowing spirals covering the surface of this elegant container are among the most prevalent of the geometric motifs that decorate bronze ritual and luxury objects produced in many regions of present-day Thailand from the fourth century B.C. to the third century A.D. Edging, possibly derived from ropes or basketry, decorates the top and bottom of this slightly flared vessel, and the base of the cover. Two small loops and remnants of a third for suspending the container are found on the upper corners of the base. The large size of the cover implies that it may have stored liquid for drinking, but another function, such as holding darts, is also possible.