Ceramic rim sherds with thumb-impressed strip decoration. Simashki Elamite Period, early 2nd millennium BC. Choga Kabira (KS 108), Susiana Plain, Khuzestan, Iran. Near Eastern Archaeology, UMMA Expedition. UMMAA 60953.

These ceramic rim sherds were collected by then U-M doctoral student Gregory Johnson during his 1970–71 archaeological survey on the Susiana Plain in southwestern Iran. The sherds come from Choga Kabira (KS 108), a village site with a long history of occupation from the early 4th millennium BC (Early Uruk period) until the early first millennium AD (Partho-Sasanian period). While similar “thumb-impressed strips” are characteristic of Early Uruk ceramics, this design motif experienced multiple revivals.  Over the decades since Johnson’s survey was completed, archaeologists have learned to better distinguish among the variants of this motif and would now date the examples shown here to the early second millennium BC, Simaskhi Elamite period, based on rim forms and ware characteristics.

Back to Day 90 or continue to Day 92.

In honor of the University of Michigan’s 2017 bicentennial, we are celebrating the remarkable archaeological and ethnographic collections and rich legacy of research and teaching at the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology by posting one entry a day for 200 days. The entries will highlight objects from the collections, museum personalities, and UMMAA expeditions. The Kelsey Museum of Archaeology is also posting each day for 200 days on Twitter and Facebook (follow along at #KMA200). After the last post, an exhibition on two centuries of archaeology at U-M opens at the Kelsey. Visit the exhibit—a joint project of the UMMAA and the Kelsey—from October 18, 2017 to May 27, 2018.