Pottery and Economy in Old Kingdom Egypt


In Pottery and Economy in Old Kingdom Egypt, Leslie Anne Warden investigates the economic importance of utilitarian ceramics, particularly beer jars and bread moulds, in third millennium BC Egypt. The Egyptian economy at this period is frequently presented as state-centric or state-defined. This study forwards new methodology for a bottom-up approach to Egyptian economy, analyzing economic relationships through careful analysis of variation within the utilitarian wares which formed the basis of much economic exchange in the period. Beer jars and bread moulds, together with their archaeological, textual, and iconographic contexts, thus yield a framework for the economy which is fluid, agent-based, and defined by small scale, face-to-face relationships rather than the state.
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Biographical Note

Leslie Anne Warden, Ph.D. (2010), University of Pennsylvania, is Assistant Professor of Art History and Archaeology at Roanoke College.

Table of contents

Acknowledgements List of Tables List and Figures and Charts Abbreviations Chapter 1: Egyptian Economic History: Locating Power, Placing Agency Chapter 2: Wages and Payers Chapter 3: Archaeology, Pottery, and Economy Chapter 4: Beer Jars, Standardization, and Economy Chapter 5: Bread Moulds: An Independent Economic Unit? Chapter 6: Microeconomic Systems: Ceramic Production Chapter 7: Placing Royal Administration and State Revenue Chapter 8: The State of the Egyptian Economy Appendix 1 Sites and Corpora Used in this Study Appendix 2 Individual Beer Jar Volumes in samples where n≥15 Appendix 3Individual Bread Mould Volumes in samples where n≥14 Bibliography


Archaeologists, graduate students in Egyptology and anthropology, academic institutes and libraries, and anyone interested in the Egyptian Old Kingdom or the structuring of pharaonic society.