Saturday 12 December 2020

Myres pithos

Ok here is something very very interesting that I have only become aware of today. During the excavations of the Neolithic Vinča culture Belo Brdo tell site, archaeologist Miloje Vasić, among many other neolithicky things, also discovered this: the so called Myres pithos:

How is this vessel not in every history and archaeology book I have no idea...This is definitely not something you expect to find in Neolithic Europe 5200–4900 BCE. Here is the neck of the pithos with the drawing of the M design with the face above it:

This is a huge vessel, of a type found in many Vinča houses. But it is the design on this one that makes it so amazing...Picture from the Vinča exhibition catalogue:

The pithos was named after the British Archaeologist John Linton Myres, the war friend of the Serbian Archaeologist Miloje Vasić, who conducted the excavation of Vinča - Belo Brdo site between 1905 and 1932...

The Myres pithos is "mentioned" in:

"Household and Community. House and Settlement Histories in the Late Neolithic of the Central Balkans (book in Serbian)"

"Без гнева и пристрасности (sine ira et studio)"

Interestingly, in even earlier settlements from Neolithic Macedonia, we also find the M symbol. Pic: amulet (?) Cerje - Govrlevo, Makedonija, 7th millennium BC:

This was interpreted as a stylised "birth giver" (depiction of a woman in a birthing position). I talked about this in my article "Birth giver"...

So what was depicted on the Vinča pithos? What is the meaning of the design (face over M sign)? Is that a brick, stone wall? Very strange all together...


  1. "The Vinča exhibition catalogue"

    Is that catalogue available online?

    1. I don't know. I only found references to it in the above articles

    2. Probably Maria Gimbutas put an M on all these things as a joke..