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Article

Gordon Campbell

The term is used in two distinct senses. In prehistoric archaeology (in which there is an eponymous ‘combed ware culture’), the term denotes a pattern of pottery decoration in which the impressions of a comb-like stamp alternate with rows of small depressions. In medieval and modern pottery (especially of peasant origin), the term denotes pottery covered with slips of contrasting colours combed into feather patterns....

Article

George Bankes

Pre-Columbian culture of South America that extended throughout several valleys on the south coast of Peru and flourished between c. ad 1000 and 1476. The Ica–Chincha pottery style was first recognized by the German archaeologist Max Uhle, and regional variations have since been defined by archaeologists from the University of California at Berkeley, especially by Dorothy Menzel. The Ica Valley appears to have been the main cultural centre, while the Chincha Valley seems to have had greater political significance. Commerce was important; pottery was clearly held in high esteem, since it has been found at sites on the central coast and inland in the Río Pampas area near Ayacucho, and it seems, moreover, to have formed the principal indicator of cultural cohesion and diversity between the valleys. The main feature of the decorated wares is a polychrome style, usually with a red base overpainted with white and black designs. Motifs are frequently geometric, with many designs taken from textiles, including diamonds, stepped lines and zigzag lines. There are also many depictions of birds and fish that are difficult to see in the maze of angular designs. A characteristic vessel shape is a jar with a rounded base, globular body, narrow neck and flaring rim. Dishes with a flanged rim are also common. As on ...

Article

Nancy E. Green

(b Doylestown, PA, June 24, 1856; d Doylestown, March 9, 1930).

American archaeologist, ethnologist and decorative tile designer and manufacturer. Mercer grew up in a privileged Philadelphia family, and at a young age he began his lifelong love of travel, which would take him eventually throughout Europe, the Middle East and Mexico. These travels would later influence his tile designs for the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works. From 1875 to 1879 he attended Harvard University, studying with George Herbert Palmer, Henry Cabot Lodge and Charles Eliot Norton, the latter having a defining influence on the development of his aesthetic sense. From 1880 to 1881 he read law, first with his uncle Peter McCall and then with the firm of Fraley and Hollingsworth, both in Philadelphia, though he never received his law degree. Thereafter, he returned to Europe, becoming interested in archaeology and beginning his lifelong passion for collecting the minutiae and mundane objects of everyday life, becoming one of the first scholars to examine history through a material culture lens....

Article

Fernanda de Araujo Costa

Pre-Columbian culture of South America, named after the Brazilian city of Santarém at the junction of Rio Tapajós and the lower Amazon. The high concentration of Pre-Columbian peoples formerly existing in the lower Amazon Basin, represented in the main by the Santarém culture and the Konduri complex, extended along both banks of the Amazon and the lower courses of its tributaries, the Tapajós, Nhamundá and Trombetas. Santarém remains chiefly comprise numerous pottery and stone artefacts. They are often found intact, or nearly so, and richly decorated, sometimes with modelled decorations known as ‘caretas’. Applied ornaments are common in Santarém pottery and are often found detached from the pieces they once decorated. Such pottery is attributed to the Tapajó, a people who occupied the territory at the time of the first European contact. Often found in association with the Santarém ceramics are items of pottery attributed to the Konduri, neighbours of the Tapajó, whose principal centre was the city of ...