Erich Lessing

Archaeologists have found a number of cosmetic palettes dating to pre-dynastic Egypt. Most of them are much plainer and smaller than the Narmer Palette—which suggests that they were actually used for grinding mineral ores into powders. The so-called Four Dogs Palette is 13 inches long and has a much more intricate design. The Four Dogs Palette, with its centrally placed grinding area, was probably a ceremonial palette, used not to grind ore but to serve some religious, symbolic or aesthetic purpose.