Types of vase – form and function

Although subject to individual variance, there was only a fairly limited number of vase shapes (around 20) from which a Greek potter would choose. The form of the Greek vase was directly related to its function. For example, the krater was well-suited for mixing water, wine, and other liquids.  In contrast, the psykter (‘cooler’) was employed for cooling wine, while the tiny alabastron, which could be tied to the wrist, was used for carrying perfumes, oil, and other unguents.

Examine the following vases. What do you think their function was?




Look at the following diagram for different vase shapes and their technical names.

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