EMEE Object Pass (Status Quo)
January, 2014
Name / EMEE Partner
National Museum of Archaeology
Bell Beaker vase
Object No. 984.670.54
Reference Object
Object Group
Secondary Object
Photos / Images of the Object (please send the photos also as jpgs)
Photo Credits / Sources
Inventory number: 34858. Author: José Pessoa. Location: DDF.
Short description
Bell Beaker vase with convex bottom, concave walls and everted rim. The bowl has incised decoration,
consisting of a horizontal, broadband filled by a zigzag band and oblique lines. Then, the vase presents three
horizontal bands with decoration on spine interspersed by three smooth bands. The paste is brown, well
smoothed, and the degreaser is fine-grained.
Condition of the Object
Origin of the Object
Archaeological excavations – Casal do
Pardo, Palmela.
Late Chalcolithic - Third Millennium B.C. / 2500 / 2000 B.C.
Kind of Object (Material, Particularity)
Ensemble (other Objects)
Collected in a necropolis context, along with a funeral collection with similar characteristics (Bell Beaker
© Prof. Uwe R. Brueckner /ATELIER BRÜCKNER
Holder / Lender / Collection
National Museum of Archaeology
Dimension (Length x Width/Depth x Height/Thickness)[ in mm ]
Height: 102,9; thickness: 59; diameter: 119,1
Weight [ in Grammes ]
Conservation Requirements
The usual for the preservation of fragile ceramic wares.
Presentation Requirements
Showcase. There should be especial careful in its exhibition and lighting, due to decoration that covers the entire
bowl of the piece.
Is the Object part of a current Exhibition (or the Collection)?
Title of the exhibition
Title of the exhibition area
Area number
Current Presentation Situation
In reserve
Intended Effect/ Impact/ Perception for the Visitors
With the presentation of this artefact, it is intended to create a didactic effect, as this piece is a typical
characteristic exemplary of the bell-beaker period, when this type and decoration were common to most of
Europe - "pan - Europeanism". It can also be evoked the aesthetic effect, not only by the shape, which is
characteristic of this “Bell Beaker” culture, but also by the incised decoration, such as geometric patterns on the
polished surface (burnished).
Theme / Content
Ritual ceramics.
History and Significance of the Object / Original Context of the Object / Reason for Presentation
This is one of the best examples of " bell-beaker ceramics", which is representative of the typical shape and
decoration of this period: inverted bell-shaped or bell-shaped vase, profusely decorated.
This artifact was collected during archaeological excavations, dating from the late nineteenth century, in Casal do
Pardo, Setúbal (Setúbal – Lisbon Peninsula). It was found in a burial context, in on of four hypogea (funerary
monument carved into the rock) intervened in this archaeological site.It was incorporated in the collections of the
National Museum of Archaeology in the early twentieth century.
This ceramic container is part of a set of offerings / funeral furniture, collected in hypogeum (collective funerary
monument), which are characteristic of the "bell-beaker period," in association with some artifacts with some
regional features of the Lisbon peninsula and Setúbal.
It is important to highlight In this piece the high technical quality of the manufacture and complexity of decorative
composition - international decor.
© Prof. Uwe R. Brueckner /ATELIER BRÜCKNER
National Perspective / Significance
This artifact is representative bell-beaker period, which is associated with the complexification of societies. This
social change is reflected in the funeral furniture that reflects the prestige and social differentiation, from the
period when the graves were still collective.
The manufacture and decoration of the artefacts, such as this, represent the careful artistic expression of this
period. In this sense, it can be a copy of imported models, which implies the existence of communication and
structured / consolidated manufacture networks, or regional inventions.
European Perspective / Significance
The Bell Beaker vase is a representative example of a "culture", which could be considered as the first known
"pan – European“ model, because the dispersion of the bell-beaker covers the Atlantic Europe, part of the
Mediterranean and Moroccan coast. These new models reflect profound social and political changes across
Europe, which may be directly related to dominant (emerging) groups. They were probably used in funerary
rituals - luxury ritual ceramics.
The bell-beaker vase is associated to a set of artifacts - "bell-beaker kit" - arrowhead type of “Palmela“, “arm
archer arrow protector“, button, arrowhead. These elements are characteristic of societies which highlights the
figure of the warrior, that may be represented by the " Iceman" - Ötzi.
References to Literature and Data that are relevant and that provide background for the object /
Bibliographic References
ALVES, Francisco (Direcção) - Portugal das Origens à Época Romana. Lisboa: 1989, pág. 41.
BUBNER, Thomas - "Restos humanos dos Hipogeus do Casal do Pardo (Palmela)", in Ethnos VIII. Lisboa: Inst.
Port. de Arq. e História, 1979.
COSTA, A. I. Marques da - "Estações Pré- Históricas dos Arredores de Setúbal. Grutas Sepulcrais da Quinta do
Anjo, in O Arqueólogo Português, vol. VII. Lisboa: Imprensa Nacional, 1907.
LEISNER, Vera - Dier Megalithgraber der Iberischen Halbinsel: der Westen. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter & Co.,
1965, pág. tafel 115, nº 3.
LEISNER, Vera Leisner; Georges Zbyszevski, O. da Veiga Ferreira - Les Grottes Artificielles de Casal do Pardo
(Palmela) et la Culture du Vase Campaniforme. Lisboa: 1961.
SOARES, Joaquina - "Os Hipogeus Pré-históricos da Quinta do Anjo". Setúbal: Museu de Arqueologia e
Etnografia de Setúbal, 2003.
Present in Exibitions:
Portugal - das Origens à Época Romana, Museu Nacional de Arqueologia, 16-10-1986 a 21 -12- 1993
LUSA: A Matriz Portuguesa, Rio de Janeiro e Brasília, 11 -10 -2007 a 4 – 2008
Vaso Campaniforme. A Europa do 3.º milénio antes de Cristo, Museu Nacional de Arqueologia, 15 -5 - 2009
a 15 -10- 2009
Examples of Ötzi (Iceman) a warrior of the Late Chalcolithic:
© Prof. Uwe R. Brueckner /ATELIER BRÜCKNER
© Prof. Uwe R. Brueckner /ATELIER BRÜCKNER

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