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Pottery

Pottery

Gallic pottery making can be divided into two phases. The first one in 200 BC, pots were modeled thanks to coils of earth which we stuck together and smoothed down to give structure to the shape. This technique was sometimes used by craftsmen potters who used a little wheel operated by hand that allowed to harmonize the forms. Pots were often exchanged, and always used localy. The work of decoration, chiseling, shaping and working the material was a custom in the times of the Gauls ; pots had to be useful, but also aesthetic.

The second period consisted in producing massively for trade thanks to the wheel which was a revolution at the time.?It represented a gain of time and allowed them to obtain a traditionally made production of very fine potteries used as table crockery, including bowls for liquids and solids, preserving, cooking and for the table. However we distinguish two types of crockery : one unrefined, often combed or scraped dishes to facilitate the prehension of vases, from finer dishes, at the same time well worked, well done and ornate.?

The decoration of the pottery which can be in relief, in hollow or simply painted, takes on a considerable importance concerning the identification of the cultural groups. Indeed, every chronological period and every region had its particular type of ceramic which was unique and different from the other ones. The Gauls knew the so-called reduction firing : result of an addition of cut branches or green foliage introduced into the oven at the right moment. The carbon so emitted penetrates into the biscuit to the heart so allowing it to develop these characteristic colours ranging from dark brown to black.... contrary to the so-called oxydation firing where the red colour due to the iron oxide contained in the clay is obtained thanks to an important oxygenation of the firing.

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